WELLSBORO — A northern Pennsylvania judge has found a man guilty but mentally ill of first-degree murder in a slaying last year.
Twenty-eight-year-old Matthew Priset of Wellsboro was convicted Friday by Tioga County President Judge Robert Dalton Jr. in the January 2011 stabbing death of 28-year-old Clinton Perry in the victim's Delmar Township home.
The guilty but mentally ill verdict doesn't reduce the mandatory life term but allows for an evaluation to determine whether Priset should be housed in a mental health facility or a prison.
Defense attorneys argued that Priset wasn't responsible for his actions, but Dalton had denied that defense, saying he was mentally ill but not legally insane at the time of the crime
Priset was also convicted of aggravated assault, burglary, theft, receiving stolen property and criminal trespass.
Ex-sheriff deputy convicted in assault case
DOYLESTOWN — A former suburban Philadelphia sheriff's deputy has been convicted of assaulting a handcuffed suspect and then lying about it in a case that also cost three other officers their jobs.
A Bucks County jury on Friday convicted 56-year-old Gary Browndorf of Morrisville of perjury and simple assault on 29-year-old Philip Romanek while serving an arrest warrant in Levittown on July 26.
But jurors acquitted the 11-year veteran of five counts of falsely imprisoning Romanek and falsely accusing him at a preliminary hearing.
Assistant District Attorney Robert James told The Philadelphia Inquirer that the split verdict may mean that jurors believed neither man.
Defense lawyer Nino Tinari called the verdict "disappointing" and "confusing."
Browndorf is scheduled for sentencing Sept. 26.
Storms cut power to thousands
PITTSBURGH (AP) — Thousands of electric customers in western Pennsylvania remain without power due to intense thunderstorms that swept through the area overnight.
West Penn Power reported Saturday morning that 7,786 customers in Fayette County were without power, as were 6,316 customers in Washington County and 2,377 in Greene County.
Bob Coblentz, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that the storms caused damage "pretty much everywhere."
He called the storm a "derecho" — a straight-line windstorm more common in the Midwest.
Highlights from Pa. Legislature's voting session
HARRISBURG — The Pennsylvania Legislature is in the midst of a busy and unusual voting session on Saturday, the last day of the fiscal year. Here are some highlights of what they did so far:
WELFARE BENEFITS: The House of Representatives gave final approval Saturday to a bill that would add work or tougher work-search requirements for poor adults to qualify for state-subsidized health care. The same bill will delay the elimination of a Depression-era cash benefit by one month until Aug. 1 for adults temporarily unable to work.
SOCIAL SERVICES BLOCK GRANT: Gov. Tom Corbett failed to win support for a plan to absorb seven different pots of aid for county-administered social services — for the homeless, mentally ill and disabled, neglected or abused children and those addicted to drugs and alcohol — into one block grant program. So he settled for a "pilot" program that could involve up to 20 volunteer counties, and the House gave final approval to that Saturday.
TEACHER EVALUATION: The House gave final approval Saturday to a bill that would replace the current performance evaluations for public school teachers now based solely on classroom observations by superiors. The new system would rely on those observations for half of the rating and the other half would be based on multiple measures of student achievement, including standardized test scores, classroom activities and quiz scores. Critics said the measure excused charter school teachers from the same standards.