Local Headlines

Important stories from the Pittsburgh region.

Matt Rourke / AP

*UPDATED: Dec. 1, 2017 at 10:05 a.m.

A Pennsylvania man whose nightly broadcast of taps through loudspeakers led to lawsuit threats and complaints from his neighbors played the recording for the last time Thursday night.

U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Joshua Corney and about two dozen supporters stood for the final playing of the taps outside Corney's Glen Rock home. He had invited the public over to listen to the recording and enjoy cookies and hot chocolate.

Corney had been playing the recording for about two years. He added the loudspeakers last spring.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

A Penn State University fraternity is facing charges over a woman's alcohol consumption.

Paul A. Selvaggio / Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium via AP

Two rare tiger cubs whose mother didn't bond with them are being hand-raised at the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium.

Zoo keepers on Tuesday showed off the twin male and female endangered Amur cubs, which were born Sept. 25. The keepers had noticed the cubs' mother, 10-year-old Tierney, wasn't caring for them 24 hours after their birth and decided to remove them.

Dr. Ginger Sturgeon, director of animal health at the zoo, said the twins don’t have names yet, but definitely have personalities.

Jared Wickerham / AP

A Pennsylvania police chief who oversaw the department when a rookie officer was fatally shot during a traffic stop is resigning.

New Kensington Mayor Thomas Guzzo said Sunday Chief Jim Klein discussed his resignation with him Nov. 16. The mayor says Klein told his officers the next day, hours before 25-year-old Officer Brian Shaw was shot and killed.

Guzzo says Klein is leaving for another undisclosed position. His last day has not been announced.

Joaquin Gonzalez / 90.5 WESA

On a sidewalk in the South Side, Aubrey Plesh is serving a hot, home-cooked meal off a folding table. It's covered with loaded mashed potatoes, chicken and gravy, and chicken marsala.

More than a dozen people have showed up on this chilly Sunday night for the outdoor meal. They're often referred to in a way that Plesh rejects.

"Homelessness, or homeless, is a very confining term," said Plesh.

She prefers to use a different term.

Centre County District Attorney-elect Bernie Cantorna announced Tuesday that he will recuse himself from the Penn State hazing death case and has asked Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro to take over.

In a statement, Cantorna cited conflicts of interest.

“Because I previously served as counsel to some of those involved in these cases, I sought the advice of the State Bar Ethics Committee about how to handle these matters going forward,” Cantorna said of his decision. “I have done that so these cases can move forward in an efficient, timely and above board manner.”

Jared Wickerham / AP

Thousands of police officers from around the country turned out to pay respects to a rookie Pennsylvania police officer who was fatally shot in a traffic stop last week.

Laurel L. Russwurm / Flickr

A western Pennsylvania man who was found guilty of intentionally delaying traffic by riding his bike down the middle of the road is appealing his conviction on nine misdemeanor counts.

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that 58-year-old David Smith of Hempfield Township was paroled Nov. 13 after being sentenced to time served. He spent about 20 months in jail as he contested cases dating back to 2012.

Noah Brode / 90.5 WESA

In the late 1990s, Kristee Cammack was taking classes at Slippery Rock University. For one course, she had to write a paper on what she’d like to change in society. She decided to visit a homeless shelter.

Kathleen J. Davis / 90.5 WESA

The 29-year-old accused of killing a New Kensington police officer last Friday has been charged with first degree murder of a law enforcement officer.

Keith Srakocic / AP

Funeral visitation began Monday for New Kensington Police Officer Brian Shaw, who was shot and killed Friday night during a traffic stop.

Kathleen J. Davis / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh's Zone 2 police officers have a new way station in the Cultural District where eight officers will be available during the day to assist residents, businesses and visitors.

Zone 2 Commander Cristyn Zett said she hopes the substation at Liberty Avenue and Market Street will help officers and the Downtown community develop a closer relationship. The main Zone 2 office is on Centre Avenue in the Hill District; Zett's officers rove a wide swath along the Allegheny River from Downtown to Upper Lawrenceville.

Pennsylvania State Police

UPDATED: 10:43 a.m. Monday, Nov. 20, 2017

Authorities are seeking a suspect in the fatal shooting of a rookie police officer.

Allegheny County Police Department

UPDATED: 5:23 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 18, 2017

An intense search continued Saturday for a suspect in the fatal shooting of a young New Kensington police officer.

Evan Vucci / AP

President Donald Trump is congratulating college sports champions at the White House.

Lars Ploughmann / flickr

 A Pennsylvania couple is suing the police and an insurance company because they say they were handcuffed for hours in a patrol car after their hibiscus plants were confused for marijuana.

Peter Petokas / AP

There's another salamander vying to become Pennsylvania's official amphibian.

House Republican leader Dave Reed circulated a memo Thursday seeking support for forthcoming legislation to make Wehrle's salamander the state's official amphibian.

His memo appeared a day after the Senate voted overwhelmingly to make the Eastern hellbender the official amphibian of Pennsylvania.

Mike Groll / AP

Maine officials say a new species of wasp has been discovered.

Jose Luis Magana / AP

A spokesman says former Pennsylvania governor Tom Ridge is in critical condition after undergoing an emergency heart procedure at a hospital in Austin, Texas.

Ridge spokesman Steve Aaron says the 72-year-old Ridge, who served as Republican governor from 1995 to 2001, was attending the Republican Governors Association conference when he called for help at his hotel about 7 a.m. 

The spokesman says Ridge underwent a cardiac catheterization at Dell Seton Medical Center at the University of Texas.

Aaron says Ridge has been responsive with physicians.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh is many kinds of city: it’s a sports city, it’s a robotics city, it’s a ketchup city. But at its most essential, Pittsburgh is a city of steep hills. In the early 1900s, public staircases were built all around the city to help people navigate challenging terrain. 

Matt Rourke / AP

Federal officials are investigating a threat made against the annual Gettysburg Remembrance Parade in Pennsylvania.

Parade organizers are asking attendees not to bring backpacks or coolers to the events scheduled for this weekend. They also say people can't carry caps, powder, ammunition or any other explosive devices.

The Gettysburg Borough Police Department said Wednesday they are working with state police and the FBI to ensure everyone's safety.

Parade attendees are asked to report any suspicious activity to police.

Nell Redmond / AP

For a second straight year, the Pennsylvania Senate is advancing legislation to permit Pennsylvania's municipal police departments to use radar to catch speeders.

JD Hancock / flickr

A Pennsylvania police department is waiving traffic violations in the hope that people will donate toys instead.

Matt Rourke / AP

Hundreds of people have gathered in Philadelphia to protest rapper Meek Mill's imprisonment on probation violations.

Celebrities and athletes spoke at the rally Monday evening near City Hall, including former 76er Julius Erving, Eagles player Malcolm Jenkins and rapper Rick Ross. Erving called Mill's sentence "excessive" and "cruel."

Mill was sentenced to two to four years in prison last week for violating probation in a nearly decade-old gun and drug case.

Video Recovered, 10 More Charged In Penn State Frat Death

Nov 13, 2017
Chris Knight / AP

Investigators on Monday said they recovered deleted security camera footage taken inside a Penn State fraternity house and had filed dozens of new charges in the death of a pledge who consumed a dangerous amount of alcohol and suffered fatal injuries.

Centre County District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller said the new evidence enabled police to determine that Beta Theta Pi pledge Tim Piazza had been given at least 18 drinks over less than 90 minutes.

James Doyle / NPR

UPMC announced a $2 billion plan last week to build three specialty hospitals focused on cancer; vision and rehabilitation; and heart and transplants.

Alfred de Montesquiou / AP

Police say they captured a big African cat, resembling a cheetah, running loose through the streets of a small Pennsylvania town.

Reports about the spotted feline started coming in on Nov. 3. When Reading officers tracked it down, they initially thought they'd found a cheetah.

The Animal Rescue League of Berks County says they got a call from the police department about the feline on Saturday.

Office of Attorney General Josh Shapiro

Six people are charged after authorities made the first known seizure in Allegheny County of a deadly opioid that's used to tranquilize elephants.

Attorney General Josh Shapiro says the six were selling $750,000 worth of carfentanil, fentanyl and heroin. Carfentanil is a synthetic opioid that's considered 10,000 times more potent than morphine.

Shapiro says his office and the Allegheny County Police Department "took down major drug dealers selling poison and carrying guns on the streets of Allegheny County.

Liz Reid / 90.5 WESA

The National Weather Service is testing a new snow squall warning system designed to help motorists in whiteout conditions avoid deadly chain reaction crashes at high speeds.

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