Pa. slaying defense to focus on 'state of mind'
GREENSBURG, Pa. (AP) - An attorney representing a western Pennsylvania man accused of strangling his wife and dumping her body in a wooded area two years ago says the defense will focus on her client's "state of mind."
Forty-three-year-old David Stahl of Hempfield is charged in Westmoreland County with criminal homicide in the February 2012 death of 37-year-old Derry Area schoolteacher Rebecca Stahl.
The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that Assistant Public Defender Donna McClelland said Tuesday that the defense has hired a psychologist. The judge ordered the report of that expert witnesses turned over to prosecutors by May 1.
Late last year, another judge denied a defense request to bar prosecutors from using Stahl's statements to police during the trial, which is scheduled to begin in mid-June.
Schwartz ad highlights her role in health-care law
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz is airing a new TV campaign commercial that aggressively touts her involvement in President Barack Obama's signature health care law.
The ad began running yesterday in the Philadelphia and Pittsburgh markets. It makes Schwartz the only one of Pennsylvania's four Democratic gubernatorial candidates to air a spot focused on the politically volatile issue.
In the ad, Schwartz says she's proud that the law seeks to expand health coverage, bars insurers from denying coverage for pre-existing conditions and closes a gap in prescription-drug coverage for seniors.
The ad criticizes Republican Governor Tom Corbett for refusing expanded Medicaid coverage for 500,000 Pennsylvanians while his administration seeks federal approval to instead subsidize an expansion of the private health insurance market.
Democrats eye 15 cities for 2016 convention
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Democratic National Committee has asked Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and 13 other citiess to make a pitch to host the presidential nominating convention in 2016.
The DNC on Tuesday said the party will accept proposals through June 6 and will pick a host city either late this year or early in 2015.
In addition to Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, the cities under consideration include: Atlanta; Cleveland; Columbus, Ohio; Detroit; Indianapolis; Las Vegas; Miami; Nashville; Orlando; Phoenix; New York City; Chicago and Salt Lake City.
Some cities seem more likely than others. For instance, President Barack Obama, who will be leaving the White House in 2017, calls Chicago home and his potential successor Hillary Rodham Clinton is from Illinois. Clinton also represented New York in the Senate.
ATV WRECK-HOMICIDE CHARGE
Pa. man held for trial in wife's 2012 death
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - A Pennsylvania judge says there's enough evidence for a central Pennsylvania man to stand trial in the slaying of his wife.
Prosecutors claim 41-year-old Joseph Fitzpatrick III of Felton killed his wife and made her death appear to be the result of an ATV crash into a creek.
After three hours of testimony Tuesday, District Judge John Fishel sent the homicide charge to York County Court.
Prosecutors say Fitzpatrick stood to collect more than $1.7 million in life insurance from the death of his wife, Annemarie.
Police say Annemarie Fitzpatrick left a signed note on her daily planner at work under the date she died - June 6, 2012 - that read: "If something happens to me - JOE."
Fitzpatrick's lawyer, Christopher Ferro, didn't immediately return a call for comment.
Man accused of painting swastikas on building
WEST AMWELL, N.J. (AP) - Authorities have accused a Pennsylvania man of painting swastikas and curse words on a building in New Jersey.
Police have charged 20-year-old Brandon Wetzel of Yardley, Pa., with criminal mischief and theft of a license plate.
Police say Wetzel cut power lines and vandalized the building along Route 179 on April 17.
It's not clear if Wetzel has hired a lawyer.
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