MONROEVILLE, Pa. (AP) – A 6-year-old boy brought a loaded .45-caliber handgun to a western Pennsylvania school, though the weapon was quickly taken from him and nobody was hurt.
Monroeville police Chief Doug Dole says the boy turned over the gun after bringing it to Ramsey Elementary School in his backpack Wednesday morning.
The school is part of the Gateway School District about 15 miles east of Pittsburgh. Spokeswoman Cara Zanella says the situation was dealt with quickly before a lockdown became necessary.
Police say the boy’s home was searched after the incident, though details of what was found – and whether his parents were home or knew about the weapon – were not immediately available.
The boy will be disciplined and school officials have decided to ban backpacks for elementary students for the rest of the year.
Chief: 2 women dead in Pittsburgh house fire
PITTSBURGH (AP) – Two women have been found dead inside their Pittsburgh home, which caught fire and spread to two neighboring homes.
Fire Chief Darryl Jones says the women lived in the first home that was reported on fire shortly after 6:30 a.m. Wednesday in the city’s Fineview neighborhood.
Authorities did not immediately release the names of the women, who reportedly lived in the home and had mobility issues. One woman was found in a chair, the other in a bathroom, both on the third floor of the home.
The cause of the fire remained under investigation. It was largely under control by about 8 a.m.
Fineview is located in the northern part of the city, across the Allegheny River from downtown and near the neighborhood known as the North Side.
Jurors to get case in stabbing of Steelers lineman
PITTSBURGH (AP) – Jury deliberations were expected to begin Wednesday in the case of three men charged in the stabbing and attempted carjacking of Pittsburgh Steelers lineman Mike Adams last year.
Dquay Means, 26, and Jerrell Whitlock, 27, are charged with attempted homicide. They are also charged with aggravated assault, conspiracy and attempted robbery, as is Michael Paranay, 26.
Prosecutors argued that Adams was stabbed during an attempted carjacking in June, but defense attorneys said a fight began after Adams knocked food out of Paranay’s hands. Adams, a 6-foot-7, 325-pound offensive lineman, was hospitalized for four days.
Paranay’s attorney, Randall McKinney, said Adams was “obliterated drunk, aggressive and out of control.” Means’ lawyer, Fred Rabner, said Adams’ account of events changed three times.
“It is perfectly appropriate to consider Mike Adams would lie,” Rabner said, saying the player was already on thin ice with the team. “He had a million reasons to lie.”
Assistant District Attorney Christopher Stone called the case “a simple credibility determination.” He said all that had changed in Adams’ story were specific details initially left out in the aftermath of the stabbing, and that Adams was forthright in his testimony and gave “calm, perfectly responsive answers.”
“If you believe Mike Adams, then you must convict all three men,” he said.
Pittsburgh man guilty in $1.9M magazine scam
PITTSBURGH (AP) – A Pittsburgh man has pleaded guilty to federal charges of running a $1.9 million scam in which 30,000 people were conned into buying magazine subscriptions that were supposed to benefit children’s hospitals, veterans’ support groups and other charities.
Forty-four-year-old Samuel Cole pleaded guilty Tuesday and will be sentenced Aug. 5. His co-defendant, 32-year-old Larhon Buchanan, previously pleaded guilty and will be sentenced June 10.
Federal prosecutors say the duo began the scam under the name New Image Consultants Inc. in 2007, then later changed the name of their firm as they switched its mailing address from Pittsburgh, to Seattle, to Dallas.
The defendants recruited door-to-door sellers and told them to pose as single mothers and ex-cons who were selling magazines to make a “fresh start” in life.
Point Park adjunct professors to hold union vote
PITTSBURGH (AP) – More than 300 part-time professors at Point Park University in Pittsburgh plan to vote on whether to unionize.
The United Steelworkers says its Adjunct Faculty Association got permission from the National Labor Relations Board to hold the mail-in vote sometime in the next 60 days.
The Adjunct Faculty Association organized a similar vote at Duquesne University, another private, liberal arts school in the city and part-time professors there voted to unionize in 2012. But that school, which is Catholic, has appealed the results of that vote by arguing the school has a faith-based exemption from NLRB jurisdiction.
Union officials say Point Park has 314 adjunct professors.
Va. college president to head Carnegie Museums
PITTSBURGH (AP) – The president of a small Virginia college has been picked as the first woman to head the Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh.
Jo Ellen Parker announced her resignation from Sweet Briar College on Tuesday and will join the 120-year-old museum system on Aug. 18.
The system consists of the Carnegie Museum of Art, the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, the Carnegie Science Center and The Andy Warhol Museum.
Parker had served as president of the private liberal arts college for women in Virginia since July 2009.
She replaces David Hillenbrand to become the 10th president of the museum system. The Carnegie Museums have a combined operating budget of roughly $66 million and attract nearly 1.3 million people annually through exhibits, educational and outreach programs.
Top UPMC executive to head Colorado health system
PITTSBURGH (AP) – One of the top executives at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center is leaving to become chief executive officer at the University of Colorado Health System.
Fifty-year-old Elizabeth Concordia was one of four executive vice presidents at UPMC, and was president of its hospital and community services division which operates UPMC’s 20 hospitals and includes 36,000 of the western Pennsylvania health giant’s 62,000 employees.
As CEO of the Colorado health network, she’ll oversee five hospitals with 14,500 employees and $2.4 billion in annual revenue.
Concordia says she didn’t leave her $2.5 million post with UPMC because she was unhappy, but rather because she was recruited for the Colorado job, saying, “These opportunities only come along every once in a while.”
Concordia begins her new job Sept. 2.
FirstEnergy faces labor charges over closed plants
PITTSBURGH (AP) – The National Labor Relations Board has charged FirstEnergy Corp. with unfair labor practices related to the closing of two coal-fired power plants in southwestern Pennsylvania in October.
The board brought the charges on behalf of Utility Workers Union of America Local 102 which represented workers at the Mitchell and Hatfield’s Ferry power plants.
The workers contend Akron, Ohio-based FirstEnergy refused to bargain over severance benefits at the closed plants unless the union local, which represents 850 workers in three states, agreed to a new contract including benefit concessions and language enabling the company to amend or end benefits at any time.
FirstEnergy officials declined to comment on the specific allegations, which will be heard by an administrative law judge in Pittsburgh on July 22. Spokesman Todd Myers says the company is confident the judge will rule for FirstEnergy.