Pittsburgh Post-Gazette from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on March 7, 1997 · Page 39
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Pittsburgh Post-Gazette from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania · Page 39

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Friday, March 7, 1997
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THE OBITUARIES 9 COMICS 12 HOROSCOPE 13 CROSSWORDS 14 LOTTERY 15 c NEIGHBORHOODS PAGE 3 SECTION PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE FRIDAY, MARCH 7, 1997 STATE Suit fails against Baldwin chief By Marylynne Pitz Post-Gazette staff Writer Baldwin Borough police Chief Christopher Kelly had probable cause to arrest three Ohio women for disorderly conduct and did not detain them unlawfully, a federal court jury decided yesterday. The police chief vowed immediately to contact the FBI and urge it to examine the activities of George Galovich. Kelly believes Galovich, a former Baldwin Borough police officer, urged the women to file the lawsuit. In a courthouse interview, Kelly insisted that "What this case is really about is that on July 7, 1993, 1 reprimanded George Galovich. One week later, he contacted these girls and promised them they could get money if they sued me." The police chief contends that Galovich used a cellular phone to contact Kimberly Schulz, Corrina Luczyk and Carol Martin in Akron, Ohio, on July 17, 1993. In their 1993 civil rights lawsuit, the women alleged that Kelly had no legitimate reason to arrest or detain them and that he tried to extort $1,500 in bond money from them. Galovich, a 13-year police officer, was fired from Baldwin's police force in 1995 after being accused of using the state police computer system for his private investigation business. In 1993, he settled a federal civil rights lawsuit against Baldwin Borough for a substantial sum of money after he was fired. He was later reinstated by Baldwin's civil service commission, then fired a second time. Kelly contends that Galovich stole arrest cards and a report from his file on the women's arrests. That information, Kelly contends, turned up in the offices of Joel Sansone, a lawyer who represented the Ohio women along with Melvin Vatz. But Sansone insists that the information he got was mailed to his office anonymously. Kelly said Galovich urged some of the plaintiffs' witnesses to change their stories, but would not say which or how many witnesses were supposedly approached. Steven M,jReinsel and Steven Santoro represent Galovich in a federal civil rights lawsuit he filed last year against Baldwin Borough, Kelly and Mayor John Bova. Galo-, vich is also appealing his dismissal to the state Supreme Court. "Mr. Kelly has a history of making accusations regarding Mr. Galovich. Quite frankly, he has accused Officer Galovich of just about everything dating back to the Kennedy SEE BALDWIN, PAGE C-ll 1 cleared, 2 convicted of murder By Ann Belser Post-Gazette Staff Writer Michael Currington tipped back his head and cried yesterday when a jury cleared him of the fatal shooting of 19-year-old Northview Heights woman. His two co-defendants sat quietly. One of them, Edward Walls, 16, was convicted of first-degree murder and now faces a life sentence. The other, Anthony L. Grey, 15, was convicted of third-degree murder. Grey, of Homewood, confessed to trying to shoot at Jones but said his sawed-off shotgun jammed. A fourth man charged in the shooting, Rodney Johnson, 19, of Northview Heights, will be tried in a separate trial. Police said he had confessed to driving the stolen car used in the shooting. The shooting took place May 25 as Torie Jones, who was pregnant, stood with her friends in a yard off Mount Pleasant Road when a stolen car drove by. One of the men opened fire on Jones and her friends. Jones died from a single gunshot wound of the back of her head. As the men fled, they fired at Housing Authority police who had given chase. In addition to the murder convic- SEE VERDICT, PAGE C-ll The rescuers were promised commendations, but paramedics on the scene also won praise. 5 f J 4 ! i - ..- . 25- ' A 1 - x - r j, 1 1 4 ' - ...... 'V W " 4k V ,1 . 1 ) . ... ' .tev,. 'a y J 7 n ; . ' .'x 'i Darrell SappPost-Gazette Firefighters carry one of the Seboroski sisters down Monroe Street after her Hill District home caught fire yesterday. Esther Seboroski, 64, and her sister, Anna Seboroski, 62, who live together in the house, were both taken to West Penn Hospital. Rescue amid thick smoke By Michael A. Fuoco Post-Gazette Staff Writer ' ' Pittsburgh Fire Chief Charlie Dickinson compared it to standing inside a closet at midnight. So dense was the smoke inside the burning two-story home at 3440 Monroe St. in the Hill District yesterday morning that a team of she firefighters could see but a few feet. No matter. They had to keep focused, keep moving, keep searching for Esther Seboroski, 64. Her sister, Anna Seboroski, 62, burned and suffering from smoke inhalation, had told firefighters who found her about 11:20 a.m. on the porch of the burning home that her sister was trapped inside. Neighbors also screamed to firefighters that Esther Seboroski was trapped. Some of them had kept Anna Seboroski, who had run from the house to report the fire to a neighbor, from going back inside. And some of them, holding wet towels over their faces, had tried to rescue Esther Seboroski but were driven back by flames and smoke. Wasting no time, six firefighters two teams led by Capt. Francis "Kip" Deleonibus of Engine Company 11 and Capt. Basil McLeod of Engine Company 6 entered the home, from which flames were shooting out the front windows. Using a water hose, they attacked the flames, knocking them1 down so they could enter. They checked the first floor for Seboroski. No luck. On to the second floor. Room by room, the firefighters conducted their desperate search. Radio transmissions from inside tracked the life-and-death drama. "Everybody who had a radio was listening and holding their breath," Dickinson said, the timbre of his voice still reflecting the drama of the moment. "You could hear Capt. Deleonibus speaking through his facepiece, repeatedly calling commands, saying they couldn't find her and was there a better location. They kept looking for her. "It really takes discipline, a tremendous amount of discipline, . when you're in that environment, because you can't see anything. You only have so much time. Minutes seem like SEE RESCUE, PAGE C-7 A iti-gay organization wins aBBeaii Penn State reverses denial of charter to student group . By Bill Schackner Post-Gazette Staff Writer Groups promoting gay and lesbian views on the campus of Penn State University are about to get some competition from the school's newest officially sanctioned student organization. Yesterday, a campus appeals board overruled a decision by members of the student government and granted a charter to an anti-gay organization that attracted national attention after it was denied access to campus resources. The board said yesterday that Students Reinforcing Adherence In General Heterosexual Tradition, whose acronym is Straight, did not discriminate in selecting its members. The panel said there was no indication Straight aimed to violate university rules prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation. "The appeals board, while believing that Straight's purpose might be phrased in a more positive manner, which we encourage it to do, nonetheless affirms that a university community should be open to a wide range of conflicting and diverse viewpoints, all of which may be freely expressed," said the panel composed of staff, faculty and students. "This open exchange of ideas and viewpoints goes to the heart of the university and should not be abridged," the board wrote. The group's founder, Penn State junior Darin Loccarini, 27, said the decision affirmed what he had been saying since the Feb. 16 denial that as a political group, Straight was entitled to campus resources the same as other campus groups. "We were right," he said in an interview last night. Loccarini said the publicity, even though it led to threats, bolstered interest in his group. "Good press is good. But bad press ain't all that bad," he said. "I'm of two minds," said Duane Gildea, a co-director of the Lesbian Gay and Bisexual Student Alliance. "As a bisexual person, it makes me realize the struggle is going to be that much harder. But as an American, I'm proud." He said the same principles used to support Straight's application "give me the rights I have as a bisexual. The system works." About a dozen Straight members met in the student union's common area Tuesday but in the future will seek access to meeting rooms and perhaps student activity money, Loccarini said. Gildea said his group and Straight would have to find ways to co-exist. "I'm sure there'll be debates," he said. "This will keep us on our toes." Cancer research gets AGH entry Hospital's parent firm hires 2 leading players for centers By Byron Spice Science Editor, Post-Gazette The Allegheny Health, Education and Research Foundation, the corporate parent of Allegheny General Hospital, has hired two leading cancer researchers to head Pittsburgh and Philadelphia components of its new statewide cancer center. The foundation plans to spend $100 million over the next five years developing the Institute of Human Oncology, part of its Allegheny University of the Health Sciences. Ultimately, Allegheny plans to seek designation by the National Cancer Institute as a comprehensive cancer center, either joining or displacing one of the state's three existing comprehensive cancer centers the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute and Fox Chase Cancer Center and the University of Pennsylvania Cancer Center, both in Philadelphia. Dr. Norman Wolmark, director of the existing Allegheny Cancer Institute at Allegheny General, will be chairman of the statewide institute. "Our aim is not to compete with existing cancer centers," he said, but to add to medicine's knowledge of cancer and provide patients with greater access to clinical trials and cutting-edge technology. But in so doing, the institute's research and treatment capabilities will be developed to the caliber necessary to compete for core funding from the NCI. Wolmark -said Allegheny had committed $50 million to him to develop scientific and clinical programs of the cancer institute over a five-year period. The foundation has committed another $50 million for construction and other related needs. "There's no question there's plenty of competition in the state of Pennsylvania," said Dr. Howard Ozer, a hematologist-oncologist and tumor immunologist who will head the Philadelphia component of the institute. Ozer previously was director of the Winship Cancer Center at Emory University in Atlanta. New NCI guidelines suggest that core funding for comprehensive cancer centers will become increasingly flexible and that some existing centers may lose funding, Ozer said. Dr. Robert Comis, formerly clinical director of the Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia, will join Allegheny as director of the cancer institute's Pittsburgh component. He will also head a new Allegheny Cancer Clinical Trials Research Center in Philadelphia. That center will have technical skills necessary for developing new drugs and operating clinical trials within the institute, Wolmark said. The clinical trials center will be the new headquarters for the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group, of SEE CANCER, PAGE C-8 Secrecy on superintendent search extends to TV program By Mackenzie Carpenter Post-Gazette Staff Writer It seemed innocuous enough an invitation to appear on one of two live broadcasts aired on WQED-TV earlier this- week to discuss the selection of a new Pittsburgh school superintendent. But in the touchy, highly charged atmosphere of secrecy surrounding the search to replace retiring Superintendent Louise Brennen, such .invitations carry a certain Eeril, especially if you're Bette Hughes or ,iz Healey. Hughes, director of the Pittsburgh Council on Public Education, and Healey, a school board member, were asked by WQED producers to appear on the one-hour live broadcasts, which aired Monday and Tuesday nights only to encounter strong objections from other players in the superintendent search process. Healey is an outspoken board member whose views don't always coincide with her colleagues', and Hughes, besides being a prominent public school advocate, is also a member of the 16-member "community input committee" screening the superintendent candidates. But when a co-chair of that committee, publishing executive Linda Dickerson, got wind of WQED's invitation to Hughes and several other committee members, she fired off letters warning them not to speak publicly about the applicants. "It is imperative that you not discuss any of the applicants specifically or in general, lest you compromise your ability to remain a contributing member of the community input committee," Dickerson wrote in letters to Hughes and a second WQED panelist, Sylvia Wilson, an elementary teacher who also serves on the committee. Healey, in turn, got a thumbs down from her fellow board members when she told them she had accepted WQED's invitation to talk about the superintendent's importance. "They told me not to appear on the program, that board President Ron Suber would speak for the whole board," Healey said. "I was annoyed, but personally, I don't think it's worth fighting about." So Healey backed out, but Hughes, Wilson and a third committee member, Robert Nelkin, a child development expert at the University of Pittsburgh, appeared on the programs, apparently without incident. Neither Wilson nor Nelkin could be reached for comment. Hughes said yesterday that she was puzzled by the warnings she had received, and not just from Dickerson. "I was at a meeting in the mayor's office Thursday when I was approached by a school board member and strongly warned not to appear on the show. He said, 'You'll regret it,' and walked away," Hughes said. "I wasn't planning to violate any confidences," Hughes said. "I was going to talk about education philosophy. They just seem SEE WQED, PAGE C-7 .4' V

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