News in brief from around the commonwealth
Newborns to get college saving grants
Pennsylvania is starting a program proposed by state Treasurer Joe Torsella to provide college savings accounts for newborns, beginning with a $100 grant.
Torsella said Monday the program will be open to any child starting next year who is a Pennsylvania resident at birth or adopted by a Pennsylvania family. Parents will be notified about the account set up for them.
Gov. Tom Wolf signed the program into law Friday.
It’s projected at a $14 million annual cost for an average of 140,000 births per year and Torsella says it can be financed by donations and surpluses in Pennsylvania’s existing college savings program.
The Treasury Department will invest the money and income it earns can be spent on a range of post-high-school education needs until the child reaches age 29.
Couple: Theater called cops on them
A black family says a Philadelphia movie theater manager called police when they tried to retrieve their children from the theater after getting a refund.
Ismael and Ashley Jimenez told Philly.com they’d taken their youngest son with them to complain about a beeping noise during a Friday showing of “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom,” leaving their three children and two of their friends in the theater.
Ashley Jimenez tried to retrieve the children but was denied entry. Jimenez says she went anyway and police were called. In a video posted to Facebook, several officers are seen responding. No one was arrested.
Cinemark Theatres says in a statement Tuesday “at no time was the family restricted access to their children.” It says a police officer working security at the theater requested additional police but an officer “calmed the situation” and the family left.
Former PSU worker faces charges
A former Penn State University employee has been charged with filming people inside a bathroom on campus.
The State College Area School District says a student reported being filmed at the Bryce Jordan Center during a prom held in May.
The student told police a man that he thought was a chaperone led him to a restroom. The student says he later heard the sound of video being recorded and saw a camera pointing in his direction.
Police records show officers later found more than 30 videos of men being recorded inside the restroom on the man’s phone.
The 54-year-old man was charged Monday with multiple counts of invasion of privacy.
A Penn State spokeswoman says the man is no longer employed by the university.
Rapper’s request for new trial denied
A Philadelphia judge denied rapper Meek Mill’s petition for a new trial in his decade-old drug and gun convictions Monday despite support for the request by the district attorney’s office.
Mill’s attorneys had asked for a new trial based on credibility issues with former Philadelphia police officer Reginald Graham, who was the only officer to testify at Mill’s original trial on his 2007 arrest. The Philadelphia district attorney’s office supported the request after placing Graham on a list of unreliable police witnesses.
Judge Genece Brinkley said late Monday she was not convinced that Graham was not a credible witness in Mill’s case. She wrote that if evidence that the former officer may have lied or stolen money was presented at his original trial, she believed it would not have changed the verdict. Mill had waived his right to a jury trial and opted to let Brinkley decide his case in 2007.
Mill’s attorneys tried unsuccessfully to have Brinkley removed from his case, but said they plan to again seek to have her removed based on issues with the opinion and her conduct at the new trial request hearing.
The Associated Press.