Metro Beat

Police not using Tasers

AP—Pittsburgh police say they’re using Taser stun guns less frequently. Police used Tasers 212 times last year, 40 percent less than in 2007 when they used Tasers a record 359 times. The city began using the devices in 2005 and about 400 of the city’s nearly 900 officers carry them.

Deputy Chief Paul Donaldson says the drop “is indicative of the public awareness of the Taser’s potential.” The devices deliver up to 50,000 volts in short burst through prongs shot from a pistol-like weapon that remain attached to electric wires.

Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala formed a task force on their use two years ago after a man died shortly after he was stunned. The medical examiner later determined the Taser didn’t contribute to his death.


Nonprofit nominated for award

Faith-based nonprofit organization, Amachi Pittsburgh, has been nominated for the Public Allies Pittsburgh’s RISE ChangeMaker Award, which recognizes up and coming organizations and individuals who demonstrate leadership and a positive commitment to the region.

Amachi helps children in Alle­gheny County who have at least one parent incarcerated through mentoring and resource support.

“A committed mentor can change a child’s life, especially a child who is faced with the harsh reality that their parent is behind bars,” Anna E. Hollis, executive director of Amachi Pittsburgh said in a press release. “At Amachi Pittsburgh, we’re tapping into the power of mentorship, and we are pleased that Public Allies Pittsburgh recognizes the work we are doing. We are honored to be nominated for the RISE ChangeMaker Award.”

Voting for the award is open to the public. You have until Sept. 3 to vote for Amachi by visiting There will be a ceremony Sept. 30 at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts.


Teen on trial for friend’s death

AP—A western Pennsylvania man has been ordered to stand trial in the death of a longtime friend who allegedly named him as the shooter hours before he died earlier this month.

Nineteen-year-old Warren Irvin was charged with criminal homicide in the death of 20-year-old Glenard Bryant, whose family lived across the street from him in Wilkinsburg near Pittsburgh.

The victim’s mother testified at a preliminary hearing Friday that young people were hanging out at the playground at an elementary school next to her home Aug. 11, and it was a quiet night until her son banged on her door after he was shot.

She said he told her that “Bates” had shot him, and everyone knew he meant Irwin. Investigators say he told them the same thing, and Irwin was arrested hours after Bryant died at UPMC Presbyterian.


New course relieves pain

The Community College of Allegheny County will now offer an arthritis exercise course to relieve stiffness and decrease pain in areas affected by arthritis. Beginning Sept. 13, CCAC, in conjunction with the Arthritis Foundation, will offer this 10-hour session at the Bethel Park Gracious Living Center in Bethel Park. It was developed by physical therapists.

For more information on the course or to register, call 412-469-6359.


Hospital offers new care

As a part of a continued commitment to offering the best care to patients, Forbes Regional Hospital has introduced a new Comprehensive Breast Cancer Program with the hire of a new coordinator and new technology.

“Our goal through imaging and coordination of services is to provide a pathway for quicker diagnosis and more timely treatment,” Maureen Bidula, MD, and vice chair of radiology at Forbes Regional Hospital, said in a release.

The hospital now has the GE Essential Digital Mammography unit, which is a full field digital unit with a large viewing field. Also, through a grant from the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Pittsburgh Affiliate, the hospital has been able to hire a breast cancer coordinator, who will assist women who have abnormal mammogram and ultrasound findings. She will also coordinate follow-up care with specialists, surgeons and medical and radiation oncology.

This is a program that is becoming more frequent in more hospitals.


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