HARRISBURG — A central Pennsylvania man is in custody after police say he tried to sell his infant son in a shopping center parking lot.
Forty-year-old Jermaine Williams is being held at Dauphin County prison on charges of dealing in infant children and child endangerment.
Investigators say the Harrisburg man tried to sell his infant son in the parking lot of a Susquehanna Township shopping center on Friday morning.
Police say Williams approached a woman, asked her for money then tried to hand her the baby. Authorities say Williams also approached other people.
Williams is being held on $75,000 bail. Online court records don't list an attorney for him.
Jailed ex-Sen. Orie wants out during appeal
PITTSBURGH — Former Pittsburgh-area state Sen. Jane Orie wants to be released on bail while she appeals her conviction on campaign corruption charges.
Orie's attorney requested last week that the former lawmaker be released while she appeals her March conviction on charges she used her taxpayer-funded staff for campaign purposes. Prosecutors opposed that request in filings Monday.
The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports Orie's request for a new trial says the judge in the case erred by barring discussion of the "personal animus" between her family and Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala Jr.
The defense claimed the charges against Orie were politically motivated, an allegation denied by prosecutors.
Two other Orie sisters are charged in the campaign corruption investigation, including suspended state Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin.
Philly grandmother gest 57 months in drug case
PHILADELPHIA — A Philadelphia grandmother has been ordered to spend more than four years in federal prison for selling prescription drugs out of her home.
Forty-five-year-old Diane Donnelly was ordered Monday to spend 57 months in prison for distribution of a controlled substance and related charges.
Donnelly was arrested in May 2011 after selling drugs to an undercover officer. A search of her home turned up $28,000 in pills including Xanax, Ritalin and Adderall.
The Philadelphia Daily News reports Donnelly was the primary caregiver for her 8-year-old grandson.
Man, 69, gone from personal care home
CONFLUENCE — State police are searching for a 69-year-old man who's been reported missing from a personal care home in southwestern Pennsylvania.
Troopers from the Somerset barracks aren't identifying the home, but say Hillel Seymour Chigev was last seen there about 1 p.m. Monday.
The home is located in Lower Turkeyfoot Township, near Confluence, about 60 miles southeast of Pittsburgh.
Volunteer firefighters and other volunteers searched for the man until late Monday and have yet to find him.
Police seek suspects in Pittsburgh-area fatality
CORAOPOLIS — Police have been searching up to four men they say were also present when another was fatally shot in his Pittsburgh-area home, possibly as part of a drug deal.
The Allegheny County medical examiner has confirmed the man's death, but no other details about the 20-year-old man shot in Kennedy Township about 8 p.m. Monday.
County police say they're looking for three or four other men who reportedly sped away from the man's home, possibly in a maroon Chevy.
Police have stopped short of saying whether any or all the men are suspected in the man's death. Police say the man's parents were home at the time he was shot in the head. Kennedy Township is a quiet bedroom community about five miles west of Pittsburgh.
Officers want evidence excluded in beating suit
PITTSBURGH — Attorneys for a trio of Pittsburgh police officers accused in a civil suit of beating a teenage arts student during an arrest say any previous allegations of misconduct shouldn't be brought up at trial.
The three officers are accused of badly beating 18-year-old Jordan Miles during an arrest in January 2010. Miles filed a federal civil rights suit claiming physical and psychological injuries.
In motions filed Monday, the attorneys for officers David Sisak, Michael Saldutte and Richard Ewing sought to limit testimony from a city police commander and bar mentioning that the charges against Miles were dropped at a preliminary hearing.
The officers also want separate trials on liability and a second to determine damages, if necessary.
The trial is set to begin July 16.
Murder trial starts in Gotti witness prison death
HONESDALE — The murder trial is under way for inmate charged in the jailhouse killing of a mobster who testified on behalf of Mafia heir John "Junior" Gotti.
Prosecutors say Allen Archie Hurley stabbed Joseph O'Kane 92 times inside the cell at a federal prison in northeastern Pennsylvania in April 2010.
Investigators say Hurley confessed to killing O'Kane, saying they'd had a physical altercation earlier and he wanted to finish O'Kane off rather than risk retaliation. Hurley's attorney argues his client was defending himself.
The Times-Tribune of Scranton reports Hurley had 24 years left on a bank robbery sentence before O'Kane's killing. O'Kane was serving a life sentence for murder and racketeering.
O'Kane testified during a racketeering case that ended in a mistrial for the late Gambino crime boss's son.
Ex-Superior Court Judge Joyce formally disbarred
ERIE, Pa. (AP) — A former Superior Court judge set to be released from federal prison later this year from his 2008 insurance fraud conviction has been disbarred by the state Supreme Court.
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Tuesday reports that the high-court handed down the order disbarring 63-year-old Michael Joyce, of Erie County, on June 14.
The Pennsylvania Court of Judicial Discipline had previously barred Joyce from ever holding judicial office because he was convicted of insurance fraud for collecting $440,000 by exaggerating neck and back injuries from a slow-speed car accident years before. His law license had also been suspended before he was permanently disbarred last week.
Joyce was eventually sentenced to 46 months in federal prison and is scheduled to be released from a halfway house in Pittsburgh in late August.
Moody's: Highmark deal not enough to save network
PITTSBURGH — A bond rating service says Highmark Inc.'s proposed $475 million takeover isn't enough to save Pittsburgh's second biggest hospital network.
Moody's Investor Service says dropping patient volume and continued operating losses mean the West Penn Allegheny Health System will need more capital or other outside investments in the next two years.
Highmark, the state's largest insurer, announced the takeover of the six-hospital West Penn Allegheny system in November. State regulators must still approve the deal.
Although Moody's predicts that will happen, the ratings service says West Penn's financial outlook remains negative and has kept its junk bond rating on $737 million in debt the hospitals have issued.
Highmark has reportedly given West Penn half of the $400 million in grants and loans promised in the deal, which includes another $75 million to start a medical school.
Ellwood considers lottery for nativity display
ELLWOOD CITY — A western Pennsylvania borough is considering a lottery system to solve objections from an atheists' group over a Nativity scene that has been erected annually on borough property for decades.
The Beaver County Times reports Tuesday that Ellwood City's borough council has given preliminary approval to a lottery that would let anyone enter a contest to erect a holiday display. The winner would then put up any kind of holiday display they wished which, borough officials believe, would prevent the Madison, Wis.-based Freedom From Religion Foundation from objecting that the borough had "endorsed" a particular religion.
Critics of the idea say the borough had better be prepared if someone wins the contest who doesn't wish to erect a Nativity.
The borough about 35 miles northwest of Pittsburgh added secular symbols after the Wisconsin group complained last year.