TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR AUGUST 12TH, 2020

P-A Department of Health officials are announcing 828 new COVID-19 cases across the Commonwealth.  That brings the statewide total to 120-thousand-281 confirmed or probable coronavirus cases since the start of the pandemic.  Tuesday’s announcement added 35 new COVID-19-complication related deaths, with the death toll now at 73-hundred-52. Lawrence County had no new cases reported yesterday. The county has 392 cases and 16 deaths.

A man from Jefferson Township is accused of taking photos of underage girls while in a bathroom.  Joshua Pethtel allegedly told state police he would photograph the girls from an outside window.  The 33-year-old was accused back in March of taking the photos and inappropriately touching an underage girl, which he has denied.  Pethtel is in Butler County Jail on ten-thousand-dollars bail.

The Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association is beginning to work with state officials on ensuring a safe start for fall sports amid the pandemic. Officials say they sent a letter to Governor Tom Wolf’s office yesterday to start discussing the issue. This comes after the governor made an announcement last week recommending that no high school sports be played until next year.

Pennsylvania parents are speaking up about their children playing fall sports.  In a Facebook group called “Let Them Play PA,” 14-thousand group members are giving their commentary on the possible upcoming sports season amid the pandemic.  The majority of the comments support the idea of student-athletes playing in the fall with coronavirus safety measures in place.  Some members of the group are challenging the idea and even questioning the decisions of Governor Wolf and Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine.

Michael Rosfeld’s lawsuit against the University of Pittsburgh will not be heard in court.  A federal judge dismissed the case against the university.  Rosfeld was a former University of Pittsburgh police officer.  He claims he was fired from his job after arresting three men in a bar fight, one of the men arrested was the son of the vice chancellor of the university.  In dismissing the case, the judge said Rosfeld resigned from his job and his resignation was not forced.

A longtime Assistant D-A for Allegheny County is dead after a battle with coronavirus.  Russ Broman had been hospitalized since July 7th and reportedly moved into critical condition July 14th.  Family members believe the 65-year-old was exposed to COVID-19 on June 30th at the Allegheny County Courthouse.

Senator Dave Arnold is pushing a bill that says would keep a governor from withholding federal funding ever again.  The measure would ensure CARES Act funding goes to where it’s supposed to go, according to Arnold, who adds that his measure is similar to the recent right to know bill.  If the bill passes and becomes law prior to a settlement, P-A would have ten days to get the 12-point-eight million dollars to Lebanon County.

Officials with Butler Area School District say they will use specialized cameras to detect students’ temperature as they enter school.  Monday night, the school board was able to see one of the new H-I-K Vision temperature cameras that will be in use.  It’s reported the cameras can scan up to 30-students-per-second with staff alerted via a notification on their laptop.  There will be a follow-up scan using a handheld touchless thermometer.  The cameras were purchased using a grant from Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency.