AstraZeneca's sale of molecule antibiotics to Pfizer to have 'minimal' impact on Delaware

By Amy Cherry 11:16am, August 24, 2016 - Updated 12:05pm, August 24, 2016
Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca's sale of its molecule antibiotics business to Pfizer for $1.5 billion, including rights and royalties, will have a "minimal impact" on Delaware.

AstraZeneca spokeswoman Abigail Bozarth declined to provide specific job loss expectations that may be associated with the sale of the company's commercialization and development rights to its late-stage small antibiotic business.

"The impact in the US and Delaware is minimal," she said. "A very small number of employees currently support development activity for our small molecule antibiotic business at our US sites. These employees are located at our Boston, Wilmington, and Gaithersburg sites."

AstraZeneca has cut jobs at its U.S. headquarters in Fairfax in recent years.

When asked whether "very small" could be defined by less than 50, she declined further comment.

The sale marks a thawing of relations between the British company and New York-based Pfizer after an acrimonious battle to avoid a takeover just a few years ago.

Under the deal, AstraZeneca will sell the commercialization and development rights in most markets globally outside the United States. It includes an upfront payment of $550 million.

"This transaction is in line with our business strategy and something we have previously discussed as part of our plans in Infection," said Bozarth. "It supports our sharper focus on our main therapy areas, while helping to realize value from our antibiotics portfolio--Pfizer will be able to provide the long term investment in the development and commercialization of these assets that is needed to maximize their potential, delivering greater value to patients and customers."

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Contact Amy Cherry at acherry@wdel.com or on Twitter

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Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.






Ex-Smyrna High School teacher awaiting trial on sex charges can do yard work

By Associated Press 10:39am, August 24, 2016
Joshua Rutherford
A former teacher and coach awaiting trial on child sex charges can do yard work while on home confinement, a federal judge said.

The judge granted a request by Joshua Rutherford's attorney to modify his pre-trial release conditions so he can work in his yard between noon and 2 p.m. each day.

Rutherford of Camden-Wyoming is subject to home confinement other than for court appearances and appointments with his probation officer and lawyer.

Authorities said Rutherford, who worked at Smyrna High School and was also an assistant football coach for the Division I State Championship team, began an on-line chat with an undercover investigator in February, thinking he was communicating with a teenage girl's father. Officials said Rutherford expressed interest in meeting the girl for sex and requested nude images.

He stands accused of seeking child pornography, and attempted inducement of a minor.


New study reports First State not 1st in women's equality

By Lauren Huet 5:16pm, August 23, 2016 - Updated 7:28pm, August 23, 2016
A screenshot from Wallet Hub's disparity breakdown
Ladies in Delaware: a new study by WalletHub said the First State is not first in terms of women's equality.

Delaware ranked in the middle tier while Pennsylvania and New Jersey fared much worse, finishing in almost last place.

In anticipation of Women's Equality Day on August 26, WalletHub conducted a study which identified the most gender-egalitarian states. WalletHub Analyst Jill Gonzalez said analysts looked at 15 metrics across three different categories.

"Workplace environment, things like, of course, the gender pay gap," she said. "Also, how many women executives there are versus male. We looked at education and the disparities between the different types of degrees that men and women have in each state, and finally political empowerment. Everything from the House to the Senate to the State legislature."

Delaware ranked in 29th place, but Gonzalez said the state fared pretty well in some areas.

"The workplace environment is not too shabby in Delaware as far as work hours--not a huge disparity between women and men--and even with pay, women right now make 88 cents on the dollar. Of course, we want that to be equal, but that's the 5th best right now in the country," said Gonzalez.

Pennsylvania finished 47th and New Jersey came in 48th place.



"Although there were no strong regional ties, almost every Northeastern state was in the top half of the list. So, those two did surprise me being so close to the bottom," said Gonzalez.

Women in nearby Maryland can boast their state made it into the top ten, finishing 8th.

Hawaii took first place while Alaska took second. Gonzalez said grassroots efforts make the difference between high ranking and low ranking states.

"A lot of this has to do with the grass roots initiative that then gets passed on to government," said Gonzalez. "Grassroots policies that women have implemented within their organizations, within their workplaces, that have kind of sprang up and really had some help with their local legislation getting policies state mandated."

A full description of the analysts' methodology is available at WalletHub.com.


Bear man, 19, charged in just shy of a dozen burglaries, trespassing incidents

By DJ McAneny 11:10am, August 24, 2016
Thomas Lowe/Courtesy New Castle County Police
A 19-year-old man has been charged by New Castle County Police in connection to just shy of a dozen burglaries and related crimes in the Newark and Wilmington areas.

According to authorities, Thomas Lowe was connected to 10 different burglaries and a trespassing complaint involving theft from motor vehicles.

Lowe was developed as a suspect, and a search warrant served at his residence in the 700 block of Seymour Road in Bear turned up evidence linking him to the alleged crimes, police said Wednesday.

The locations of the incidents were listed as:
  • two in Grendon Farms
  • four in Murray Manor
  • two in Elmwood
  • one in Penndrew Manor
  • one in Heritage Farm
  • one in Eastburn Acres


  • Lowe was charged with 10 counts of third-degree burglary, four counts felony theft, seven counts misdemeanor theft, misdemeanor trespassing, and unlawful use of a credit card. He was committed to the Howard R. Young Correctional Institution in lieu of $44,001 secured bond.


    Smash-and-grab suspect stopped during shopping spree in Wilmington

    By Andrew Sgroi 8:23am, August 24, 2016
    Yolanda Bowden, 32, of Wilmington (Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control)
    A Wilmington woman was arrested on Monday afternoon for the alleged break-in of a vehicle and a subsequent unlawful shopping spree.

    The incidents happened earlier on Monday, August 22, 2016, according to the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC), when a visitor to Bellevue State Park had reported several valuables, including credit cards, had been stolen from a vehicle in the park's main lot.

    As DNREC Parks & Recreation Natural Resources Police began an investigation into the theft, they learned that the victim's credit card companies had reported that new purchases had been made at various stores along the Philadelphia Pike corridor.

    Park Rangers advised they then viewed surveillance video at several of the businesses, and were able to link a vehicle in those videos to a woman making the purchases that had been reported by the credit card issuers.

    Natural Resources Police then described that, later that day, one of the theft victim's family members spotted the described vehicle, from the surveillance videos, in the parking lot of the Home Depot, located at 3600 Miller Road in Wilmington. Both Natural Resources Police Park Rangers and the Delaware State Police waited for the driver to get back to the vehicle and were able to identify 32-year-old Yolanda Bowden as the suspect in the earlier theft. She was taken into custody without incident.

    Yolanda Bowden was arrested on an assortment of charges that included six felonies and four misdemeanors related to the incident. Charges included burglary third degree; possession of burglary tools; forgery second-degree; unlawful use of a credit card; criminal mischief; theft, and possession of drug paraphernalia. She was committed to Baylor Women’s Correctional Institution in Wilmington for lack of $12,600 secured bond. She was also wanted on outstanding charges in Delaware related to shoplifting, as well as had outstanding warrants from Whitpain Township, Pennsylvania, on similar offenses.


    Occupied Dover home hit by shotgun blast

    By DJ McAneny 10:51am, August 23, 2016
    A home in Dover was hit by a shotgun blast Sunday night, authorities announced Tuesday.

    According to Dover Police, a home in the 300 block of Charring Cross Drive in the Village of Westover was found by officers to have been struck by a shotgun round.

    The home was occupied at the time of the incident--approximately 11:45 p.m. on August 21, 2016--but there were no injuries associated with the incident.

    Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to contact Dover Police at 302.736.7130 or Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1.800.TIP.3333.


    Man fires gun at suspect trying to break into home west of Clayton

    By DJ McAneny 4:33pm, August 23, 2016
    A homeowner shot at a suspect attempting to break into his residence early Tuesday morning, Delaware State Police announced that afternoon.

    According to authorities, the incident occurred in the 1000 block of Clayton Delaney Road, west of Clayton, at approximately 1 a.m. on August 23, 2016.

    The homeowner observed a man attempting to gain access to a locked porch door and, when the suspect spotted the homeowner, the man fled into a cornfield in the rear of the yard.

    The homeowner fired a handgun in the direction of the suspect multiple times, but police said they do not believe the suspect was struck.

    An assist from a Smyrna Police K-9 proved fruitless.

    Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to contact Delaware State Police Det. Christian Hevelow at 302.365.8471 or Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1.800.TIP.3333.


    Invasive beetle enters Delaware

    By Amy Cherry/Allan Loudell 2:18pm, August 23, 2016
    Emerald Ash Borer (Photo/Delaware Dept. of Agriculture)
    A destructive, invasive beetle that kills select trees has made its way into Delaware.

    The Emerald Ash Borer hails from East Asia, but was already found in neighboring states like Pennsylvania and Maryland.

    The Delaware Department of Agriculture said the beetle was caught in a trap in an ash tree in New Castle County. Delaware marks the 28th state the invasive pest has entered; it first appeared in the Detroit, Michigan, area by way of Ontario, Canada.

    "Unfortunately, one of the reasons that this insect is spread so rapidly across the United States is it's a good hitchhiker on firewood, and people tend to move firewood, sometimes without really thinking about what they may be transporting along with it," said Dr. Faith Kuehn, state plant industries administrator.

    Kuehn offered some tips for helping prevent the spread of the beetle.

    "Don't go into any campground--state or private--with firewood; they should purchase firewood from the campground itself," said Kuehn. "And if they have friends or family coming in from out-of-state, they should tell them to leave their firewood at home."

    Delaware will be added to a federal quarantine--already in place in 27 states--that restricts interstate transport of all ashwood and wood products--including waste, firewood, compost, and wood chips. Some shipment out of state may be permitted if certain requirements are met and a federal permit is issued.

    Statewide impact is expected to be minimal, as the beetle focuses on ash trees, which only make up two percent of trees in Delaware, according to the Delaware Department of Agriculture.

    "There are some parts of the state, particularly in New Castle County, where ash trees are a reasonable component of either the city parks or of some of the suburban developments--so that's a real concern," she said.

    Symptoms of an Emerald Ash Borer infestation may not be apparent immediately, with damage taking up to three years to be visibly detectable. Symptoms can include branch dieback in the upper crown, vertical bark splits, and small shoots on the trunk, as well as woodpecker damage, said state agricultural officials.

    "Once that is compromised, the tree becomes weak," she said. "Ash trees are a host to a wide variety of insects including other boring insects."

    Parasitic wasps can be used to help bring down the population of Emerald Ash Borer, as a long-term, viable method of managing the invasive species.

    ---

    Contact Amy Cherry at acherry@wdel.com or on Twitter

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    .




    Starboard hosts fundraiser for Dewey Beach restaurant destroyed in fiery crash

    By Associated Press 10:47am, August 24, 2016
    One prominent Dewey Beach businessman is stepping up to help another prominent Dewey beach businessman who lost his restaurant to a massive fire two weeks ago.

    Chicken Ed's, located at Route 1 and Swedes Street, burned to the ground on Tuesday, August 9 after a Kent County woman, accused of speeding and driving drunk, lost control of her car on Route 1 and slammed into the iconic eatery.

    Now, Steve "Monty" Montgomery said he's hosting an event at his restaurant, The Starboard, Wednesday from 5 to 8 p.m.; he said that proceeds from admission fees will go towards helping Chicken Ed's owner Ed Riggin clean up the aftermath of the fire and to aid his employees, who are out of work.

    Monty said he plans to salvage one of Chicken's Ed's picnic tables to bring to The Starboard so Riggin can "hold court" during the event which the general public is invited to attend.

    Riggin meantime, has said he has NO plans to re-build; he also has pointed out that he has one year remaining on his current lease of the property.

    A fiery crash destroyed the iconic Chicken Ed's in Dewey (Rehoboth Beach Fire Co. 86).

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    Study rates Delaware's economic performance as the 3rd best in nation

    By Joe Irizarry 9:44pm, August 23, 2016 - Updated 10:45pm, August 23, 2016
    Despite job losses over the past year, Delaware's economic performance ranks higher than many might think; it's in the top five, according to one study.

    Politifact Senior Correspondent Louis Jacobson ranked all of the states in six statistics including: unemployment, Gross Domestic Product, personal income and job growth. Delaware ranked third after all scores were averaged together.

    "Three statistics ranked 5th, 8th and 8th--those were good. There were a couple of statistics that were 17 and 15 which were not bad. The one that is below average might help explain for why Delaware folks might not feel all that great, it ranked 32, which is below average in the change per capita of personal income," said Jacobson.

    He said the rankings are not an indicator of the governor's policies.

    There is not a direct straight line from a governor to good economic performance or bad economic performance," said Jacobson. "There are factors involving international trade, state of the economy nationally and so forth that are out of the governor's control. That said if the economy is doing well, generally it's a plus-sign for the governor.

    Massachusetts and Oregon were the two states ranking ahead of Delaware. As for the surrounding states, Maryland was 10th, New Jersey ranked 24th and Pennsylvania came in 39th.


    Beer coming to the movies in Newark

    By Joe Irizarry 5:46am, August 23, 2016 - Updated 9:50am, August 23, 2016
    Beer with popcorn? That will be an option when a movie theater opens in Newark later this year.

    Main Street Movies 5 request was approved by Newark City Council Monday night.

    In its proposal, the theater would sell no more than one alcoholic beverage to a person at a time, and no more than two alcoholic beverages to a patron per movie showing.

    Those 21-and-over intending to buy alcohol would be identified with a wristband, and no one under 21 would be allowed to be at the bar or counter where alcohol would be sold.

    The movie theater will be at the Newark Shopping Center on Main Street.


    Newark Police ask public for help locating suspect in multiple burglaries

    By DJ McAneny 4:18pm, August 23, 2016
    Stephan Lloyd/Courtesy Newark Police
    A 20-year-old man is wanted by Newark Police for his alleged connection to multiple residential burglaries in June 2015.

    According to authorities, an investigation has led police to issue a warrant for Stephan Lloyd, a 6'3" black male with a thin build and a last known address in Middletown, but with ties to Newark and Smyrna.

    Police said Lloyd is facing charges of second-degree attempted burglary, three counts second-degree burglary, seven counts theft, criminal mischief, receiving stolen property, and third-degree criminal trespass.

    Anyone with information on Lloyd's location is urged to contact Det. Morgan Fountain at 302.366.7100 ext. 3133 or Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1.800.TIP.3333. Police warn residents not to attempt to apprehend Lloyd on their own.


    Ford recalls over 88K vehicles due to stalling problem

    By Associated Press 11:02am, August 24, 2016
    Ford has recalled more than 88,000 cars and SUVs in North America because the engines can stall without warning due to a fuel pump problem.

    The recall covers certain Ford Taurus and Police Interceptor sedans, Ford Flex wagons, Lincoln MKS sedans and Lincoln MKT SUVs from the 2013 through 2015 model years. All have 3.5-liter turbocharged six-cylinder engines.

    Ford said the fuel pump control modules can fail, and the engines may not start, or they could stall, leaving drivers without the ability to restart them. The company says it's not aware of any crashes or injuries from the problem.

    Dealers will replace the control module at no cost to owners.


    Maryland State Fair planning Pokemon Go contests, prizes

    By Associated Press 10:47am, August 24, 2016
    The Maryland State Fair is embracing Pokemon Go.

    Fair officials say Sunday will be "Pokemon Go Da" at the fairgrounds in Timonium. They're inviting players to spend the afternoon using smartphones to capture Pocket Monsters at five fairground locations, and do battle in two virtual gyms.

    Pokemon contests will take place Sunday through September 1, featuring prizes such as day-passes, ride-vouchers, and gift certificates to a sponsoring restaurant.

    Workers noticed Pokemon players searching the fairgrounds in recent weeks, so fair officials added more Pokespots for fair visitors.

    The fair opens Thursday and continues through the 5th of September.


    Bigger numbers of high school grads taking ACT college test

    By Associated Press 11:02am, August 24, 2016
    AP Nearly two out of three of this year's high-school graduates took the ACT college entrance exam, and the scores suggest many aren't ready for the rigors of college-level courses.

    The testing company said only 38 percent of graduating seniors who took the exam hit the college-prepared benchmark in at least three of the four core subjects tested - reading, English, math and science. That's down from 40 percent last year. Reaching three of more benchmarks indicates a strong readiness for college course work.

    ACT's Paul Weeks said a decline in scores was expected because the pool of test-takers has increased sharply. More states are paying for ACT testing of public school students.

    Nearly 2.1 million graduating seniors took the ACT, up from 1.9 million in the last school year.


    WATCH: Baltimore boy shows off new hands a year after double-hand transplant at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

    By Associated Press 3:56pm, August 23, 2016 - Updated 4:25pm, August 23, 2016
    Zion Harvey/Via NBCPhiladelphia
    It's been just over a year since now-9-year-old Zion Harvey received a double-hand transplant--and now he can throw a ball, zip his clothes and write in his journal.

    The suburban Baltimore boy is talking about his progress Tuesday in a briefing at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, where he underwent the 10-hour surgery in July 2015. His mother, doctor and physical therapists were joining him.



    The nation's youngest hand transplant patient has been going through extensive rehab to learn how to use his new hands. He lost them and his feet to amputation seven years ago after suffering a serious infection.

    Zion has leg prosthetics that allow him to walk. Earlier this month, he showed off his new abilities by throwing out the first pitch at a Baltimore Orioles game.

    Zion Harvey/Via NBCPhiladelphia

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    Wilmington Police investigate afternoon shooting

    By Joe Irizarry 8:21pm, August 23, 2016 - Updated 10:45pm, August 23, 2016
    A 19-year-old woman was shot in Wilmington.

    She was located by Wilmington Police late Tuesday afternoon on the 2700 block of North Tatnall Street.

    Police said she suffered from a gunshot wound to her right ankle; she was treated on the scene and taken to Christiana Hospital in stable condition.

    Two vehicles also sustained damage in the shooting.

    The investigation is still active. Anyone with information is asked to call Detective Jeffrey Dickerson at 302.576.3620.


    Man, 43, shot in the arm in Wilmington during robbery attempt

    By DJ McAneny 10:55am, August 23, 2016
    A 43-year-old man was shot in the arm in Wilmington Monday night, authorities announced Tuesday.

    According to Wilmington Police, the victim was found in the 500 block of West 31st Street at 9:19 p.m. on August 22, 2016.

    The victim was transported to Christiana Hospital in stable condition.

    Police are looking for several suspects, described as black males wearing dark clothing who confronted--and attempted to rob--the victim within a residence, then shot him when a struggle ensued.

    Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to contact Wilmington Police Det. Lindsay Hageman at 302.576.3620 or Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1.800.TIP.3333.


    Dover Mall chase leads to suspected heroin dealer arrested while hiding in attic

    By DJ McAneny 1:52pm, August 23, 2016
    Traymere E. Stevens/Courtesy Delaware State Police
    A drug deal investigation at the Dover Mall which led to the recovery of a "large amount of heroin" following a foot pursuit has now also resulted in charges.

    On August 10, 2016, Traymere E. Stevens fled from the mall during a drug investigation, but discarded a quantity of heroin recovered by police.

    According to Delaware State Police, an investigation led Dover and Delaware State police, along with U.S. Marshals, to a residence in the unit block of East Water Street on Monday, August 22.

    Stevens was found hiding in an attic and taken into custody without incident.

    He was charged with possession of a controlled substance-Tier III quantity, possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance-tier II quantity, tampering with physical evidence, possession of drug paraphernalia, and resisting arrest. He was committed to the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in lieu of $34,000 secured bond.


    Employee flees to back of store during Bear dollar store robbery

    By DJ McAneny 1:33pm, August 23, 2016
    A dollar store in Bear was robbed by a pair of suspects Monday night, Delaware State Police said Tuesday.

    According to authorities, the men entered the Dollar Tree at 660 Eden Circle and one confronted a female employee while the other acted as a lookout.

    Police said the female fled to the rear of the store while the suspects forced the drawer open and stole an undisclosed amount of money.

    There were no injuries, and no weapon displayed or involved.

    Both suspects were described by police as a black males, one with a thin build, who were wearing black shirts and black pants with masks.

    Anyone with information regarding this incident is urged to contact Delaware State Police at 302.265.8566 or Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1.800.TIP.3333.


    Biden: US committed to protecting Baltic states from Russia

    By Associated Press 2:10pm, August 23, 2016
    VP Joe Biden (WDEL/file)
    U.S. Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday reaffirmed America's determination to defend the Baltic nations of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia against any aggression from neighboring Russia.

    Biden told reporters that the U.S. remains committed to NATO's Article 5, the key principle of collective defense of all alliance members. He dismissed comments from Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump that, were he to win November's election, he might withdraw U.S. backing for the Baltics' defense.

    "We mean what we say. We have never reneged on any commitment we have made. Our sacred honor is at stake," Biden said after a Riga Castle meeting with the three Baltic presidents: Raimonds Vejonis of Latvia, Dalia Grybauskaite of Lithuania and Toomas Hendrik Ilves of Estonia.

    Biden said Trump's remarks were "nothing that should be taken seriously, because I don't think he understands what Article 5 is."

    In an interview last month with The New York Times, Trump said he would decide whether the Baltic states should enjoy continued NATO protection from Russia based on whether those countries "have fulfilled their obligations to us." This prompted a furious response in all three Baltic capitals.

    Biden said NATO forces would strengthen security along their shared eastern border with Russia. The former Soviet Union occupied all three nations from the final months of World War II to 1991.

    Biden is scheduled to visit Turkey on Wednesday and Sweden on Thursday.


    R&B groups to headline Atlantic City's 5th beach concert

    By Associated Press 1:45pm, August 23, 2016
    Maroon 5 played AC's beach concert last year, attracting tens of thousand of people. (Randy Gyllenhaal via NBC10)
    Two rhythm and blues groups will headline Atlantic City's fifth beach concert.

    City Council President Marty Small tells The Press of Atlantic City Bell Biv DeVoe and En Vogue will perform on Sept. 22. Free tickets will be available for download from Ticketmaster on Friday. There also are a limited number of paid VIP tickets.

    Atlantic City hosted its first beach concert of the season when Jimmy Buffett performed on Aug. 13.

    The Zac Brown Band, Florida Georgia Line and Blink-182 are scheduled to play on the beach in September.


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