Cuomo weighs 7 candidates for top NY court
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Governor Andrew Cuomo is expected in the next few weeks to select a second judge for New York's highest court from among seven candidates proposed by a state commission.
Cuomo recently chose City University of New York law professor Jenny Rivera for the seven-member court, filling the vacancy left by Judge Carmen Beauchamp Ciparick, who retired.
The next appointee will fill the seat of Judge Theodore Jones Jr., who died in November.
The Commission on Judicial Nomination's short list includes four justices from the mid-level Appellate Division: Sheila Abdus-Salaam, Eugene Fahey, John Leventhal and Dianne Renwick.
The other candidates, David Schulz, Maria Vullo and Rowan Wilson, are all attorneys in private practice in New York City.
Abdus-Salaam, Fahey and Schulz were on the short list the first time.
NY firefighter shot on Christmas Eve to Washington
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (AP) A western New York firefighter who survived a Christmas Eve shooting ambush that left two colleagues dead is visiting the nation's capital.
Webster firefighter Ted Scardino was hit in the shoulder December 24 when a convicted felon opened fire as firefighters arrived to battle a blaze just east of Rochester.
Congresswoman Louise Slaughter, who is on the House Gun Violence Prevention Task Force, says Scardino will testify to the task force today. The Rochester-area congresswoman says Scardino will voice his support for legislation to make firearms trafficking a federal crime and impose stronger penalties for people who buy guns for those barred from making firearms purchases.
The weapon used in the Christmas Eve shooting was obtained by the shooter through a so-called straw purchase.
NY man suing Facebook seeks halt to criminal case
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) A New York man whose lawsuit claiming part ownership of Facebook got him arrested wants his criminal case halted.
Paul Ceglia of Wellsville filed a complaint in Buffalo federal court Monday seeking to stop the U.S. government's prosecution of him on fraud charges.
Ceglia was arrested last October in what the U.S. attorney's office in Manhattan called a multibillion-dollar scheme to defraud Facebook and its chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg. Prosecutors accused Ceglia of doctoring a contract he signed with Zuckerberg in 2003 to make it appear Ceglia would eventually receive half-ownership in the Menlo Park, Calif., company.
That contract is the basis of a pending lawsuit Ceglia filed against Facebook and Zuckerberg in 2010.
Ceglia's new complaint says prosecuting him criminally for filing a lawsuit violates his constitutional rights.
Group questions herbicide plan for Adirondack lake
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) An environmental group is calling on a state agency to hold a formal public hearing before deciding whether an Adirondack town can use a chemical herbicide to kill aquatic weeds.
The Adirondack Council wants the Adirondack Park Agency to hold a hearing on the Warren County Town of Chester's request to use the chemical triclopyr to kill Eurasian watermilfoil in Loon Lake. The agency is scheduled to debate the permit request at its monthly meeting on Thursday. Its staff has recommended approval.
The Adirondack Council argues in a statement to be released Tuesday that the chemical would harm other plants, including a threatened species, and has killed large numbers of snails in another Adirondack lake.
SUNY to spend $300K on STEM research opportunities
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) New York's public college system is investing $300,000 in a new program aimed at giving undergraduates experience in STEM research.
STEM is short for science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and experts say it's a field that will see an estimated 477,000 job vacancies in New York by 2018.
The program announced by the State University of New York and its Research Foundation on Monday will give campuses money to get undergraduate students involved in resume-boosting STEM research.
SUNY wants campuses to create new programs or enhance existing ones so that students can improve their research skills as well as their knowledge of career options in the STEM fields.
Ex-official admits $500K NY fire company theft
BALLSTON SPA, N.Y. (AP) Prosecutors say the former treasurer of an upstate New York volunteer fire department has admitted embezzling almost $500,000.
Saratoga County District Attorney James A. Murphy III says 52-year-old Virginia DeCapria of Charlton pleaded guilty Monday to second-degree grand larceny and fourth-degree criminal tax fraud for stealing the money from the Charlton Volunteer Fire Department while she was secretary and treasurer from 2005 through 2010.
DeCapria was charged after an audit by the state comptroller's office that said she used the money to buy appliances, furniture, electronic equipment and more than 250 backyard patio stones.
She's scheduled to be sentenced May 6 to from three to nine years in state prison.
(All stories copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)