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Mixed verdict in trial of Missouri man charged in death of his friend

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WILKES-BARRE —A Luzerne County jury this afternoon acquitted Patrick Ramirez of homicide by DUI, but found him guilty of the lesser charge of DUI.Ramirez, 26, of Missouri, was charged in the Sept. 9, 2013 death of his friend and co-worker Shane Stewart.The jury also found Ramirez guilty of accidents involving death and personal injury leaving the scene and two summary counts of careless driving and failure to render aid. The jury also acquitted him of accidents involving death and personal injury while not properly licensed.


Auditor General investigating claims Harrisburg neglected nurses’ mandatory overtime claims

Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale on Thursday fired up performance audit of the state’s Department of Labor and Industry to find if the agency effectively handled health care workers’ claims they were required to work overtime.Auditors are to review whether the agency recorded, investigated and resolved all complaints for the period between July 1, 2009, through August 31 of this year.Under Act 102 of 2008, health care workers may not be required...

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Our Opinion: New twist on school board meetings puts focus on talk, not titles

Would it be a good idea to …… shake up the standard school board meeting in Northeastern Pennsylvania, encouraging more direct discussion between board members and the public?The Dover Area School District in York County recently experimented with a new meeting format, turning on its head the traditional session during which residents’ voices are restricted to a closely timed “public comment period.” No barrier of long, plastic folding table...

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Wilkes-Barre police arrest man for stabbing that involved crash

WILKES-BARRE —A man city police charged with stabbing another man who drove away after the assault and crashed into a concrete levee wall along Riverside Drive last week was arrested Friday.Angus A. Garrison, 27, of Hutson Street, Wilkes-Barre, was arraigned by District Judge Rick Cronauer on two counts of aggravated assault. Garrison was jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility for lack of $250,000 bail.Police allege Garrison stabbed Reneard Harris in th...

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The Anthracite Cafe opens the Coal Bin

WILKES-BARRE — Patrons of the Anthracite Cafe will be able to be seated in the Coal Bin starting Saturday.The Coal Bin is not a black dusty coal storage area, but rather a bright sunny, airy, new 800 square foot dinning area in the long time restaurant located off Scott Street. Regular and new customers will find the additional 12 tables, 48 seats, in a restaurant honoring the coal mining forefathers an experience like no other.“We have the happiest staff and...

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Our Opinion: Diamonds & Coal

Diamonds to state police troopers, other law enforcement officers and civilians who on Thursday honored the life of Cpl. Bryon K. Dickson. Thousands of police, from multiple states and Canada, attended the funeral in Scranton of Dickson, the Pennsylvania State Police employee who was shot and killed Sept. 12 outside a barracks in Pike County. The outpouring of devotion and concern, beyond supplying comfort to the 38-year-old Dunmore man’s family, serves as a reminder of...

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State unemployment rate up slightly in August

HARRISBURG — The Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry released its statewide unemployment report showing an increase of one-tenth of a percent increase for August, but is three-tenths of a percentage point below the U.S. rate of 6.1 percent.The Commonwealth’s August unemployment rate, 5.8 percent, was 1.6 percentage points down from the rate set in August 2013 of 7.4 percent.Non-farm jobs increased statewide by 100 in August to 5,792,700. This was th...

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Notre Dame president addresses King’s conference

WILKES-BARRE — Rev. John Jenkins, C.S.C., president of the University of Notre Dame, told a large gathering at King’s College Friday morning that students should choose a Catholic institution because it teaches values and its graduates possess a moral purpose.Jenkins gave the keynote address at the two-day conference — The Idea of a Catholic College: Charism, Curricula and Community.Jenkins also praised King’s and it’s continuing expansion a...

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NITTANY NOTES: PSU-UMass game guide

They won’t come out and phrase it this way. But for Penn State coaches, Saturday’s top two, three, 10 priorities are getting the offensive line back into a rhythm.If the Nittany Lions actually have some success in the run game and keep Christian Hackenberg upright, well, that’s a nice side effect for them.To be fair, as tough as it was to watch the Penn State offense for much of last Saturday’s win, things actually did improve up front down the st...

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Wilkes-Barre police arrest two on charges they sold heroin, cocaine in Sherman Hills, Interfaith Heights

WILKES-BARRE — City police arrested a man and a woman on charges they sold heroin and cocaine to customers in the Sherman Hills and Interfaith Heights apartment complexes.Officers with the city’s Anti Crime Unit and Drug Task Force served a search warrant at a second floor apartment at 115 N. Meade St. arresting Joel Rodriguez, 24, and Sajarda Hollmes, 30, Friday morning.Police said Rodriguez and Hollmes were targeted in the investigation for drug peddling in...

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Two arrested after heroin, marijuana found in Hanover Township residence

HANOVER TWP. — A man and his girlfriend were arrested after township police allegedly found heroin and marijuana in their residence in Breslau.David Schoffscall, 25, also known as Korea, and Amber Lynn Campbell, 24, were arraigned Thursday night on drug trafficking offenses.Police said they served a search warrant at their Scureman Street residence allegedly finding heroin packets, new unused heroin packets, a digital scale with heroin residue, aluminum foil with h...

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Gov. Corbett announced $3 million grants each to Wilkes, King’s

Wilkes University and King’s College will each receive $3 million in state funding, Gov. Tom Corbett announced this morning during a media event at King’s College on the Square, the former Radisson Hotel renovated by the school.King’s plans to use the money to cover the renovation costs. Wilkes will use its share to expand the engineering program.Corbett spoke briefly to students gathered in the hallway at the front of the building before retreating to ...

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Concentrated search overnight for Eric Frein

Law enforcement intensified their search for homicide suspect Eric Frein late Thursday night near his Monroe County house in Barrett Township.Township residents were not permitted to return to their homes as they were sent to a shelter at the Barrett Township Fire Department as investigators concentrated on a vacant house at about 10 p.m.Frein, 31, was not there and remains at-large.The Federal Bureau of Investigation listed Frein as number two on their Most W...

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Fuel prices make steepest slide since July

Continuing their downward trend, fuel prices in mid-September haven’t been this low since 2010.According to the AAA Fuel Gauge Report, last week’s 5-cent decline is the “steepest one-week drop since July.”The travel service agency predicts the average fuel prices will fall another 10 cents to 20 cents by the end of October.The average price for regular unleaded gasoline in the Wyoming Valley is about $3.78, down about 2 cents from last ...

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Weekend weather to be pleasant, next week warmer and dry

The chill in the air this morning, a brisk reminder fall is near, but last night’s cool air won’t return, at least for the weekend.Clouds are clearing off the Valley this morning making way for a warm sunny day today, high of 67 with clouds gathering in the evening, according to the National Weather Service. Overnight lows shouldn’t dip below 55 degrees.Saturday will bring warmer air and clearing skies, highs near 75 degrees and a light breeze....

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Scotland vote rejects independence from England

EDINBURGH, Scotland (AP) — Scottish voters have resoundingly rejected independence, deciding to remain part of the United Kingdom after a historic referendum that shook the country to its core.The decision prevented a rupture of a 307-year union with England, bringing a huge sigh of relief to Britain’s economic and political establishment, including Prime Minister David Cameron, who faced calls for his resignation if Scotland had broken away.The vote on Thurs...

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UPDATE: Hunt for ambush suspect briefly intensifies

CANADENSIS — Hours after a slain Pennsylvania State Police trooper was laid to rest, the hunt for a man charged with killing him briefly intensified late Thursday as authorities blocked roads around the home of the suspect’s parents.The Barrett Township Fire Department opened a shelter for residents in the area who were unable to get to their homes due to police activity in the rural northeastern Pennsylvania community, but shut it down not long after as police reopened...

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Comrades travel far to honor fallen hero

SCRANTON — Trooper Todd Zynda of Minnesota said it’s a matter of solidarity.Zynda was one of thousands of law enforcement members who attended Thursday’s funeral of Pennsylvania State Police Cpl. Bryon K. Dickson, the 38-year-old husband and father of two who was gunned down Friday as he was leaving work at the barracks in Blooming Grove, Pike County.“There’s an old saying from the Law Enforcement Memorial Association,” Zynda said. ...

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