A Pennsylvania judge on Thursday ordered a suburban Philadelphia county clerk to comply with the state's same-sex marriage ban and stop issuing marriage licenses to gay couples.
Since July, D. Bruce Hanes, the elected Montgomery County register of wills, has given out 174 licenses to same-sex couples, ignoring a 1996 state law that defines marriage as "between one man and one woman."
The state Department of Health sued to stop Hanes, saying he is in "direct defiance" of the ban and "risks causing serious and limitless harm to the public."FULL STORY
A man with an ongoing dispute over property rights unleashed a hailstorm of bullets at a Pennsylvania town council meeting, killing three people, police said.
The terror began even before the gunman entered the building.
Police said the suspect marched toward a municipal building in Saylorsburg with a long gun and fired through the windows. Then he walked into the building to unload more bullets, police said.FULL STORY
[Posted at 2:51 p.m.] A woman has died as a result of Wednesday's building collapse in Philadelphia, two sources close to the investigation told CNN's Don Lemon.
No death was mentioned at the news conference that wrapped up near the site minutes ago.
[Posted at 2:43 p.m.] Fourteen people have been rescued from the site, 13 of whom have been hospitalized, officials told reporters moments ago.
Mayor Michael Nutter said that a search-and-rescue operation continues.
"Keep in mind we did not know, and we do not know, how many people were actually in the thrift store this morning when the wall collapsed this morning," and that's why the search continues, Nutter said.
[Posted at 2:16 p.m.] A Salvation Army official had this to say about the collapse that damaged the Salvation Army store:
"At this time, we are gathering information about the details of the building collapse at 22nd and Market Street in Philadelphia today. Our No. 1 concern is for the safety of our customers and the employees who were involved," Donald Lance, divisional Leader of the Salvation Army's Eastern Pennsylvania and Delaware Division, told CNN's Natalie Apsell.
"We are coordinating with the police and fire Department, the Office of Emergency Management and local authorities," Lance continued. "Also, we have sent our own disaster response team to the site to serve survivors and first responders. We ask for the public to pray for those involved."
[Posted at 2:13 p.m.] Mike Adam, who lives across the street from the site, says he took this picture from his apartment:
Adam told CNN's Brooke Baldwin that he and his fiancee were in their apartment when they heard sirens. He looked out a window and saw people running. Looking out a different window, he saw smoke and rubble.
"A block over, there's a fire department, so they were on the scene almost immediately," Adam said.
[Posted at 2:01 p.m.] While firefighters have been digging through the rubble, people from a nearby market have "graciously supplied (them) and officers with fresh apples and bananas," CNN iReporter Josh Rozell says.
[Posted at 1:30 p.m.] Philadelphia firefighters have just made another rescue, the city's mayor said.
A person who was buried in the rubble "for about two hours" was rescued by city fire personnel, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter told CNN's Don Lemon minutes ago.
That person has been taken to a hospital with minor injuries, and it bring to 13 the number of people taken to hospitals, Nutter said.
Nutter said he didn't know how many other people might be trapped, noting that officials don't yet know how many people were inside the store.
[Posted at 1:21 p.m.] To give you an idea of where this happened: The site is in a heavily traveled area of downtown Philadelphia near the Mutter Museum, a popular tourist destination that houses medical oddities.
The museum was closed Wednesday due to the collapse, it said on Twitter.
A jury Monday found a Philadelphia abortion provider guilty of three counts of first-degree murder.
Dr. Kermit Gosnell, 72, was accused of killing babies by using scissors to cut their spinal cords. Authorities alleged that some of the infants were born alive and viable during the sixth, seventh and eighth months of pregnancy.
Monday's first-degree murder conviction means Gosnell, who is not a board-certified obstetrician or gynecologist, could be sentenced to death.
Gosnell also was accused in the death of Karnamaya Mongar, 41, who died of an anesthetic overdose during a second-trimester abortion at his West Philadelphia clinic. In that case, the jury found him guilty of involuntary manslaughter.
Gosnell was also found guilty of 21 counts of abortion of the unborn, 24 weeks or older.
In Pennsylvania, abortions past 24 weeks are illegal unless the health of the mother is at stake.FULL STORY
A bus carrying 23 people, who were members of or associated with the Seton Hill University women's lacrosse team, crashed Saturday morning in southern Pennsylvania, killing at least two people, authorities said.
One person died at the scene and the other at a hospital, said Megan Silverstrim, spokeswoman for Cumberland County public safety.
The dead include the team's head coach Kristina Quigley, the county agency said. She was pregnant at the time, and her unborn child did not survive.FULL STORY
Six inches of snow in Chicago. A foot or so plastering the Upper Midwest. And up 20 inches expected just west of Washington D.C.
Surely, there's a silver lining to these snow clouds though, right? Don't they bring much-neeed moisture to parched states?
Snow is very fluffy, and it takes up to a foot of it to squeeze out an inch of rain, meteorologists say.FULL STORY
Bailey O'Neill's parents just wanted him to see his 12th birthday.
The next day, they took him off life support.
The fatal injuries that led to Bailey's death Sunday were the tragic consequences of bullying at school, his parents say.
But Philadelphia-area detectives are still investigating whether the incident was, in fact, bullying or an altercation on the playground.FULL STORY
The family of the late Joe Paterno released a report Sunday morning that absolved the coaching great of blame in the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal and said a prior review commissioned by Penn State University was "factually wrong, speculative and fundamentally flawed. "
Former Attorney General Dick Thornburgh put together the new report, the Paterno family said in a written statement.
"The experts determined that the conclusions of the (university) report are based on raw speculation and unsupported opinion - not facts and evidence," Thornburgh said, according to the statement.FULL STORY
A court hearing in Philadelphia took an unforeseen turn when a witness, testifying about the consequences of losing his left eye in an alleged assault, began crying and his prosthetic eyeball popped out of its socket and into his hand, unsettling the jury and resulting in a mistrial, according to attorneys involved.
"I've been a prosecutor for 26 years and I've never seen anything like that happen. It was unusual; it was shocking," said Philadelphia Assistant District Attorney Mark Gilson, who is prosecuting Mathew Brunelli, 23, charged with aggravated assault, for allegedly stabbing John Huttick in the eye during a bar fight in August 2011.FULL STORY
An Arizona man accused of threatening to blow up Philadelphia's Liberty Bell was charged Sunday, police said.
Carlos Balsas, 41, of Tempe, Arizona, is charged with terroristic threats, bomb threats and several other offenses, police spokeswoman Christine O'Brien said. Prosecutors approved the charges and will take up the case Monday, she said.FULL STORY
Police arrested a man Saturday for threatening to blow up Philadelphia's iconic Liberty Bell, according to police.
The unidentified man apparently left two black backpacks in front of the Liberty Wheels wheelchair and scooter rental shop in downtown Philadelphia.
Police said a bomb squad was called in and secured the scene but found that the bags did not contain explosives.
"I have no idea why" the man did this, police spokeswoman Christine O'Brien said.
The bell is considered an iconic monument to American independence.
[Updated at 11:32 a.m. ET] The state of Pennsylvania will file a federal antitrust lawsuit against the NCAA, seeking to have a judge throw out all sanctions the association levied against Penn State University in the wake of the child sex abuse scandal involving former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett said Wednesday.
Corbett (pictured) said the penalties – a $60 million fine, a four-year ban on bowl games, football scholarship reductions, and the stripping of 14 seasons of football victories under late head coach Joe Paterno – were unfair to the university, its students, and Pennsylvania citizens because the Sandusky criminal matter already is being handled in courts.
The NCAA "piled on ... (punishing) the citizens of Pennsylvania, who had nothing to do with these crimes," Corbett said.
"These sanctions are an attack on the past, present and future students of Penn State, the citizens of our commonwealth and our economy. As governor of this commonwealth, I cannot and will not stand by and let it happen without a fight," Corbett said.
He said the NCAA's actions were unlawful and overreaching, and that it essentially forced Penn State to accept the sanctions under the threat that if the school didn't accept them, the NCAA would impose on the football program a "death penalty" – a suspension from play of a year or more.
The NCAA levied the penalties last July.FULL STORY
Former Penn State University President Graham Spanier was arraigned Wednesday morning on charges he helped to cover up allegations that Jerry Sandusky was sexually abusing boys on campus, CNN contributor Sara Ganim reports.
It happened in seconds. A 2-year-old boy slipped over a railing, bounced into a safety net, bounced again, and tumbled into an exhibit of African painted dogs, which mauled him to death.
The heartbreaking scenario came to light Monday as the Pittsburgh Zoo released details of the child's death Sunday.
A group of African painted dogs killed a boy who fell into their exhibit today at the Pittsburgh Zoo.
Barbara Baker, the zoo's president, said the child was around 3 years old.
He "fell off an observation deck that's about 14 feet above the exhibit," she said, "and was killed by the dogs."
Former Penn State President Graham Spanier blasted the charge against him for allegedly covering up years of sexual abuse as a "desperate act" by the state's "vindictive and politically motivated" governor - an accusation that drew a biting retort from Gov. Tom Corbett. FULL POST
Missing 10-month-old Saanvi Venna was found dead Friday morning, and a friend of her family's has been arrested and charged in her and her grandmother's killings, a Pennsylvania prosecutor said Friday.
A little girl was fighting for her life early Monday after she was shot outside a Halloween party by a relative who mistook her costume for a skunk.
Police in western Pennsylvania's New Sewickley Township said the 9-year-old girl was dressed in black with a black hat for the Saturday evening party.
As the two to three dozen guests milled about, the girl went to hide on the edge of a hill.
Jerry Sandusky's lawyers are seeking a new trial for their client, according to court documents filed Thursday in Centre County court in Pennsylvania.
The convicted sex abuser and former Penn State assistant football coach was sentenced to no less than 30 years and no more than 60 years in prison after being convicted in June of sexually abusing 10 boys during a 15-year period.
The once-beloved coach, whose abuse triggered a scandal for one of the nation's most storied college football teams, was given credit for 112 days served.
In addition to requesting a new trial, his lawyers also filed a motion Thursday to reconsider the sentence.
The lawyers argue that there was insufficient evidence to convict Sandusky, and that the court didn't allow them enough time to prepare for trial. They also argue, among other things, that certain counts should have been dismissed on the grounds that they were too general and non-specific, preventing Sandusky from preparing an adequate defense.
A Philadelphia judge ruled Friday to stay the execution of Pennsylvania convicted killer Terrance Williams and grant a new penalty phase in the case.
Williams, 46, was scheduled to be executed on October 3. No one disputes that Williams beat Amos Norwood to death with a tire iron in 1984 or that he should be in prison.
But his defense team says information that Norwood had allegedly sexually abused Williams was withheld from the trial, and his life should be spent in a cell.
Philadelphia Judge M. Teresa Sarmina on Friday found "reasonable probability" that the verdict might have been different had allegations of abuse surfaced during the initial case and that the relationship between the two men had been established but not disclosed.FULL STORY