Catching too-small fish no longer a criminal offense in Del.
By Mellany Armstrong

Updated Tuesday, September 2, 2014 - 6:06pm

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VIDEO: WDEL's Mellany Armstrong reports.

Getting caught with a too-small fish will no longer be a criminal offense in Delaware, but you'll pay a bigger fine.

WDEL's Mellany Armstrong reports.

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Governor Markell signed Senate Bill 258 at the DuPont Environmental Education Center. The bill declassifies some minor violations that were tying up the Board of Pardons.

"We spend so much time dealing with requests for pardons from people for offenses that they probably really shouldn't have to seek a pardon for," he said.

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DNREC Secretary David Small says the bill lowers the offenses from misdemeanors to violations for wildlife, boating and fishing transgressions.

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Chief Justice Leo Strine says criminal records for minor offenses were ruining lives.

"The delays that someone can experience in the employment process, or just the fact that an employer hits on something," he said.

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Ron Horton, a member of the Delaware Bass Federation, says he likes the fact that it's not on a criminal record if you make a mistake.

"Yes, it's a smack on the hand and you pay a little better fine, but it's not where it's going to get into your private life," he said.

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The bill doubles minimum fines for first offenses.








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A sneak peek at new A.I. duPont hospital
By Tim Furlong, NBC10

Updated Tuesday, September 2, 2014 - 2:45pm

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Video by NBC10

A sneak peek at the new $270 million A.I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington.

Work is still underway, but NBC10 and some lucky kids got to test out the new Discovery Zone area in the atrium. Powered by the Xbox Kinect system, the highly interactive video wall will be fun for visitors, but hospital therapists will also bring patients to the massive HD wall to get their bodies moving. Dr Neil Izenberg says the new building will have 144 single patient rooms, and it is designed to be bright and airy and family-friendly.

"Hospital design is completely different than it used to be. Hospitals were cold forbidding places now they are designed with families at the center of the design process thinking about how kids feel comfortable and how families feel comfortable. It is all centered around the family," Izenberg said.

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The new building will open to patients in October, but the hospital will also hold a community day so everyone can come in to check out the new facility and give that super cool discovery zone wall a try.



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Police: Man shot in Wilmington
By Tom Lehman

Updated Tuesday, September 2, 2014 - 6:16pm

A 36-year-old man was shot Tuesday afternoon in Wilmington.

The shooting occurred about 1:30 p.m. in the 1200 block of Lancaster Avenue, said Master Sgt. Donald Bluestein.

Paramedics transported the victim, who was shot in the abdominal area, to Christiana Hospital for surgery, Bluestein said.

The man was not immediately interviewed by investigators, he said.

Anyone with information can call Detective Shane Sowden at (302) 576-3606, the Wilmington Police Criminal Investigations Division at (302) 576-3620 or the department's Confidential Tip Line at (302) 576-3990.

You can also submit an anonymous text message tip by texting the words TIP WILMINGTON and then your tip to 888777.

Tips can also be submitted to Delaware CrimeStoppers at 1 (800) TIP-3333.

You can contact Tom Lehman at tlehman@wdel.com or follow him on Twitter at @teelehman.



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Blue Hens putting Pitt shutout in the past
By Sean Greene

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VIDEO: Dave Brock on Pitt, looking ahead to DSU

Forget chicken soup, the Blue Hens hope a little chicken parm is all they needed to get past their program's worst shutout loss in over 80 years.

Delaware fell 62-0 at Pitt on Saturday, their worst shutout loss since an 89-0 setback to the University of Pennsylvania in 1921.

The Blue Hens had 24 players, including several true freshman, start their first game in the Blue and Gold during the loss.

After the team made their way back across the Keystone State, Head Coach Dave Brock said a goal was to keep things as normal as possible.

For Delaware, a normal Sunday means a film study, practice, and team dinner. The opportunity to bond over a meal, which this week included Chicken Parmesan, was welcomed according to offensive lineman J.D. Dzurko.

"Watching film you focus a lot on what you did wrong and the negative aspects of Saturday. Then you practice, you kind of get a physical workout in and you start executing going through the fundamentals, and then the team meal is kind of relaxing, I got a chance to sit across from (running backs) Coach (Tony) Lucas and his wife. "

During the meal the team highlighted several players that Brock said played well, including tight end Nick Boyle, safety Simba Gwashavanhu, and special teamer Andrew Opoku.

With a solid Italian dinner, and a busy Monday around the facility, despite it being an off day, behind them, the Blue Hens now focus on "Route 1 Rival" DelState.

The Hornets are also reeling after falling 52-21 in their season opener at Monmouth. The biggest bright spot was on the opening kickoff, when Aris Scott returned it 98 yards for a touchdown. Delaware is 5-0 against their instate rival, winning each game by at least 10 points, including last year's 42-21 victory.

DelState has had success moving the ball on the Blue Hens, passing for 639 yards in the last two games, but they still have yet to lead at any point in the series, including the 2007 I-AA Tournament game in Newark.

Delaware did not get out of the Pitt game completely healthy. OLB Derek Battle is out for the season, and DT David Tinsley is having an arm injury re-evaluated, but could be done as well. TE Matt Rodriguez, listed as 2nd on the depth chart this week, is also limited at practice, but Brock says the team will know more on Wednesday. Delaware could be forced to take off the redshirt of true freshman Brandon Whaley if Rodriguez can't play Saturday.





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Man killed in deadly Philly Pike crash identified
By Peter MacArthur

State police have identified the man killed in a fatal crash on Philadelphia Pike in North Wilmington Sunday.

Ronald Miller of Newark was driving near Sunset Drive when his car crossed the center line and was hit head on by another vehicle.

Police say Miller was wearing a seatbelt and had to be extricated from his vehicle by rescue crews.

He died of multiple blunt force trauma. No word on why his car traveled into opposing traffic.




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DSU celebrates opening of a new high school on its property
By Joe Irizarry

The ribbon is cut on a new high school at Del. State University. (Photo/Joe Irizarry)
Delaware State University launches the new Early College High School at the DSU Living and Learning Commons in Dover.

WDEL's Joe Irizarry has more.

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The school at the former Sheraton Hotel is a college preparatory school that has a strong emphasis on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math or the STEM subjects.

Students can earn up to 60 college credit hours while completing high school requirements, and Director of the Early College High School, Dr. Judi Coffield explains the goal of the school.

"Encourage more students to aspire to go to a four-year program and earn a degree and not just the typical, cream of the crop, A+ student, but any student who aspires to go. We have the resources and supports to make sure that they're able to be successful," said Cottield.

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Senator Carper explains the benefits of the school.

"We need more students, who might not go to college go to college. We need for them to be prepared, we need to make college more affordable. This school, if it works, and I think it will, will do all those things," said Carper.

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What's brewing in Historic Odessa this weekend?
By Mellany Armstrong

Updated Tuesday, September 2, 2014 - 9:43am

Rich Wagner pours steaming hot water into the mash
They're brewing up history in Odessa this weekend.

WDEL's Mellany Armstrong reports.

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Historian, beer lover and colonial reenactor Rich Wagner will be at the first Historic Odessa Brewfest to demonstrate beer-making from start to finish.

"I reenact the brewing process from William Penn's time, the 1680s," he said.

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Wagner worked with a cooper to build his own equipment.

"They can certainly see how a brewery would have looked in somebody's back yard back then," Wagner said.

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Wagner says beer today is very different than the ones they drank in colonial times.

"From the type of barley that's planted to the type of hops that have been developed, and just having a pure yeast culture in modern times changes the equation quite a bit," he said.

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The festival runs from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday on the lawn of the Wilson-Warner House. Proceeds go toward preservation of Historic Odessa buildings and educational programs. Buy tickets online at www.odessabrewfest.com, or call 302-378-4119.



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St. Elizabeth HS teacher returns from Rwanda trip
By Amy Cherry

Updated Tuesday, September 2, 2014 - 6:58am

A St. Elizabeth's theology teacher is back from a mission trip to Rwanda with an idea for Wilmington.

WDEL's Amy Cherry has more.

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"My biggest concern was can I communication with my family and can I take a shower."

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To her surprise, Melissa Pollio was able to do both in even some of the most remote parts of Rwanda. What she found most striking was that most children in small villages...

"Many of their children have never seen a white person. One of the kids was wiping my arm, trying to wipe the white off of me because they didn't understand why I didn't look like they looked," said Pollio.

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But even more so, she said many of the Rwandan children rarely see themselves.

"They want you to take their picture because a lot of them have also never seen themselves. They know you have a camera, and they say, 'Picture, picture!' And they want you to show them what they look like," she said.

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The Called to Witness program is aimed at telling Rwanda's story and how the country has grown since the 1994 genocide. Pollio was also urged to share her own insights with a goal of...

"Building up that system to enable those people to make better lives for themselves," she said.

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Pollio says very little crime takes place in Rwanda due to peace and justice commissions that teach conflict resolution-- an idea she's brought home with her to quell violence in Wilmington.

"Somehow I want to see what we can could do with the community, even within the context of a school and using conflict resolution to better our young people and also the surrounding community," Pollio said.

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Delmarva Power asks customers to save energy
By Associated Press

Updated Tuesday, September 2, 2014 - 6:03pm

Delmarva Power is asking customers in Delaware and Maryland to conserve energy as high temperatures are expected to push into the upper 90s in some areas.

The company issued a notice late Monday calling for customers to conserve power Tuesday. It will be a "peak savings day" for customers in Delaware. That means they will receive credits for saving power between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.

Delmarva is asking all customers to save electricity by setting thermostats at 78 degrees, keeping window shades closed and by postponing use of high-energy appliances such as electric stoves, washing machines and dryers.

For customers who participate in Delmarva Power's Energy Wise Rewards program, the utility will cycle their air conditioners off and on for short intervals between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.




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Police: Md. man left child in car while gambling
By Associated Press

Updated Tuesday, September 2, 2014 - 6:03pm

State police have arrested a Maryland man for leaving his child unattended in a car while he was gambling in a casino.

State troopers were called to Harrington Raceway and Casino just Monday afternoon for a child left in a car parked in a handicapped parking spot. Police say the engine was still running, and the child did not appear to be in distress.

Troopers removed the 14-month-old girl from the car, and casino managers paged for the owner of the vehicle.

Police say 26-year-old Justin Middleton of Preston, Maryland, responded to the car. He initially denied leaving the baby in the car but later acknowledged he had left the girl in the car while he was inside gambling.

Middleton was charged with reckless endangering and other charges.




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County police seeking rape suspect
By Allan Loudell

Do you know this man?
New Castle County police need the public's help in finding a man who assaulted his victim in Alban Park last Wednesday.

Police say the rapist attacked a 29-year-old woman behind the homes in the 1600 block of Coleman Street just before midnight last Wednesday.

The victim says her attacker got away in an older model silver sedan with a temporary Delaware license plate.




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Two hurt in Townsend accident
By Allan Loudell

Two people are hurt in an accident in Townsend, which also tied up traffic along Route 13 Monday night for about 2.5 hours.

State police say 24-year-old Tiffany Peters of Bear was driving a Toyota Corolla south on Route One north of Route 71, Summit Bridge Road.

But, police say Peters' car drifted onto the center median and hit a raised barrier in the median.

At that point, the car flew into the air, and struck an overpass wall before landing upright on southbound Route 13, which passes underneath Route One.

EMS crews managed to pull Peters - and a passenger, a 25-year-old man - from the car.

Both ended up at Christiana Hospital. Peters, treated for non-life-threatening injuries. The man suffered serious injuries.

Police expect to charge Peters.



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865K drivers pay Del. tolls for holiday
By Allan Loudell

Delaware's roadways were crowded for the holiday weekend.

DelDOT says nearly 865,000 motorists went through the state's three toll-plaza locations: I-95 south of Newark, Route One at Biddle's Corner, and Route One in Dover.

The I-95 toll plaza at Glasgow saw the most vehicles passing through.

The transportation agency estimates the haul for the four-day period at more than $2.6 million.

Nearly two-thirds of the counted trips utilized E-Z Pass.



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Woman reports being stopped by phony cop
By Mark Fowser

State poice are investigating an incident in which a man impersonated a police officer after stopping a vehicle in Sussex County.

Troopers say a female motorist was traveling on Coverdale Road near Hastings Farm Road near Seaford at about 10:45 p.m. Monday when someone driving behind her activated police-style lights on his vehicle.

The woman pulled over on the shoulder, and a man got out of the vehicle and inquired about her "erratic driving."

He appeared to be wearing a handgun in a holster and was also carrying a radio.

The woman's suspicions were aroused and she told the man she was calling 911, at which point the man went back to his vehicle and drove northbound on Coverdale Road.





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Study links polar vortex chills to melting sea ice
By Associated Press

Updated Tuesday, September 2, 2014 - 3:10pm

(WDEL/File)
Remember the polar vortex, the huge mass of Arctic air that can plunge much of the U.S. into the deep freeze? You might have to get used to it.

A new study says that as the world gets warmer, parts of North America, Europe and Asia could see more frequent and stronger visits of that cold air. Researchers say that's because of shrinkage in ice in the seas off Russia. Less ice would let more energy go from the ocean into the air, and that would weaken the atmospheric forces that usually keep cold air trapped in the Arctic.

The study was published Tuesday in the journal Nature Communications.



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Thieves steal 7 diamond rings from beach jeweler
By The Associated Press

Photo courtesy of NBC 10
Police say three people stole a tray of seven diamond rings from a Rehoboth Beach jewelry store.

The theft occurred Saturday afternoon at Dynasty Jewelry store. Police Chief Keith Banks says two men and a woman walked in and blocked the view of a clerk on the other side of the store.

Police say the suspects lifted the top glass on a display case and took the diamond rings valued at between $20,000 and $40,000.

The clerk tried to stop the suspects, but they escaped and fled the scene.




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New Jersey OKs Trump Plaza shutdown
By The Associated Press

The Trump Plaza in Atlantic City will shut down later this month. (Photo courtesy of NBC 10)
New Jersey casino regulators have given final approval to Trump Plaza's plan to shut down in two weeks.

The state Division of Gaming Enforcement issued a closing notice Tuesday to Trump Plaza, which will cease operations at 6 a.m. September 16.

Trump Plaza will be the fourth Atlantic City casino to go out of business this year.

The Atlantic Club shut its doors in January.

The Showboat shut down on Sunday, and Revel closed Tuesday morning.

Atlantic City began the year with 12 casinos, but will have eight by mid-September.

The market has been pummeled by competition from casinos in nearby states.




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Home Depot investigates breach
By Associated Press

Home Depot is investigating a potential credit card data breach.

The Atlanta home improvement retailer told The Associated Press Tuesday that it's looking into "unusual activity" and that it's working with both banks and law enforcement.

The possible data breach was first reported by Brian Krebs of Krebs on Security, a website that focuses on cyber security. Krebs said multiple banks reported "evidence that Home Depot stores may be the source of a massive new batch of stolen credit and debit cards."

The Krebs report says that the responsible party may be the same group of Russian and Ukrainian hackers suspected in last year's massive breach at Target Corp.

Shares of The Home Depot Inc. are down 2 percent to $90.91 in late trading.



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Vets, families flock to Bethany Beach as a thanks for service
By Kelli Steele

Soldiers and their families are getting a much-needed vacation in Bethany Beach this week.

It's all part of Operation SEAs the Day.

"What that means is that we will have 35 families, veterans, who are recovering from injuries that they sustained while serving our country, and they're bringing their families, and the Bethany Beach community has come together to offer them a free and relaxing week, including homeowners providing them their homes," said a spokeswoman for Operation SEAs the Day.

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The businesses have also come together to give the soldiers and their families fishing trips, horseback riding, kayaking, and miniature golf. Restaurants have provided the families with discounts to go out to eat, and they'll enjoy a concert at Freeman Stage too.

Operation SEAs the Day works with the Wounded Warrior Project to select the warrior and their families to the week-long retreat.

You can get more information about the annual event by logging on to operationseastheday.org.




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Georgetown state rep raising awareness for ovarian cancer
By Kelli Steele

Updated Tuesday, September 2, 2014 - 8:03pm

Photo courtesy of "Turn the Town Teal."
A state representative from Georgetown wants to "turn the town teal" for September.

State Rep. Ruth Briggs King (R-Georgetown) says the movement is an effort to raise awareness for ovarian cancer, one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths in women over age 35.

"It's just a silent killer because many times there's not one definite symptom, and it's very difficult to detect through pre-screening," said Briggs King.

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Briggs King and her volunteers will tie teal-colored ribbons throughout the town's jurisdiction; the biodegradable ribbons will coincide with September being National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month.



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$2.4B Revel casino shuts down after just 2 years
By Wayne Parry, Associated Press

The Revel Casino shut down Tuesday morning. (Photo courtesy of NBC 10.)
Revel Casino Hotel closed its doors Tuesday morning, a little more than two years after opening with high hopes of turning around Atlantic City's struggling casino market.

The 5:25 a.m. casino shutdown followed the closure of its hotel on Monday.

By mid-September, four of Atlantic City's 12 casinos will have closed, but none will be a costlier failure than Revel.

It started construction just before the Great Recession hit and had to take on so much debt it never could turn a profit.

The Showboat closed on Sunday, Trump Plaza is closing Sept. 16, and the Atlantic Club closed in January.

The consolidation is a reaction to the saturated northeastern U.S. casino market, which continues to add new gambling halls to markets without enough demand to support them all.



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Netflix unveils new way to share recommendations
By Associated Press

Netflix is giving its Internet video subscribers a more discreet way to recommend movies and TV shows to their Facebook friends after realizing most people don't want share their viewing habits with large audiences.

Until now, Netflix subscribers linking the service to their Facebook accounts automatically disclosed everything they were watching with a potentially wide-reaching range of people. The company believes the open-ended approach discouraged most Netflix subscribers from connecting their accounts with their Facebook profiles.

The automatic disclosures will end Tuesday as Netflix embraces a new system that empowers subscribers to select which friends will receive their video recommendations. A menu of friends culled from Facebook will appear after Netflix subscribers finish watching a video if they have turned on the sharing feature.



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Double mastectomy doesn't boost survival for most
By Lindsey Tanner, Associated Press

A big study says removing both breasts to treat cancer in just one doesn't boost survival for most women. That's compared with removing just the tumor plus radiation.

The results raise concerns about a riskier, potentially unnecessary operation that increasing numbers of women are choosing.

The study involved nearly 200,000 California patients followed for several years.

Ten-year survival rates were nearly identical - or roughly 82 percent - for lumpectomies plus radiation, and for double mastectomies. Women who had a single mastectomy, removal of just the cancerous breast, fared slightly worse.

Most women choose lumpectomy treatment. But double mastectomies have increased substantially in recent years, especially in younger women.

The study was published Tuesday in this week's Journal of the American Medical Association.



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