News from the Associated Press - August 14, 2014

Associated Press
August 14, 2014

Florida man pleads not guilty to killing trooper

BINGHAMTON, N.Y. (AP) - A 60-year-old Florida man has pleaded not guilty to murder and 10 other charges in the death of a New York state trooper struck down during a highway traffic stop.

Almond Upton of Melrose was arraigned Wednesday morning in Broome County Court on an indictment charging him with first-degree murder for the May 29 death of Trooper Christopher Skinner. The officer had pulled over a car for speeding on Interstate 81 near Binghamton when Upton's vehicle swerved from the passing lane and hit him.

Troopers found Upton naked in woods along the highway about an hour later. Upton told police he was on his way to visit his mother in Connecticut.

Upton didn't speak at his arraignment. He was represented by Jay Wilber, a public defender.


SUNY backs bill combating campus sexual assaults

NEW YORK (AP) — New York's public university system is the first to support a bipartisan federal effort that would strengthen colleges and universities' assistance for sexual assault victims while establishing penalties for non-compliance.

U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and State University of New York officials are set to announce SUNY's support Wednesday in Manhattan.

The New York Democrat is a primary backer of the Campus Accountability and Safety Act.

The bill creates new standards for training and calls for an anonymous annual survey of students to provide a full accounting of campus sexual assaults at colleges and universities.

College campuses reported nearly 5,000 forcible sex offenses in 2012. New York colleges reported 365 of them.

SUNY is the largest university system in the U.S. with nearly a half-million students at more than 60 campuses.


NY governor offers 'total solidarity' for Israel

JERUSALEM (AP) — New York's governor is visiting Israel, where he is expressing "total solidarity" with the country in the monthlong Gaza war.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo met with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday, hours before a temporary cease-fire between Israel and Hamas was set to expire. Israeli and Palestinian delegations were engaged in talks in Egypt over a long-term cease-fire and new arrangements for Gaza.

Rivlin and Netanyahu praised Cuomo for his support, and said they were certain that the United States would continue to stand behind Israel.

Cuomo's office said he would not visit Palestinian territories or meet Palestinian officials during the trip.

New York is home to 1.7 million Jews, the largest concentration outside of Israel.

This is Cuomo's fourth trip to Israel.


Corbett, Wolf agree on 3 gubernatorial debates

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania's gubernatorial candidates don't see eye to eye on most campaign issues, but they have agreed on where and when they will hold their debates.

The campaigns of Republican Gov. Tom Corbett and Democratic nominee Tom Wolf said Wednesday they'll hold three debates between late September and early October. They will be held in the Philadelphia, Harrisburg and Pittsburgh media markets.

The first debate will be at the Pennsylvania Chamber of Commerce dinner in Hershey on the evening of Sept. 22.

The next debate will be held at the Philadelphia studios of KYW-TV on Oct. 1.

A week later, on the evening of Oct. 8, the final debate is slated to be held at WTAE-TV in Wilkinsburg, near Pittsburgh.

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