News Briefs

What you need to know locally, nationally and globally



UB student survives accident during lacrosse team practice

John Miske, a senior business and marketing major, vice president and captain of the UB lacrosse club team, survived an accident that occured during team practice on Jan. 25. Miske’s heart stopped after he was hit with a lacrosse ball and doctors were not optimistic about his condition after Twin City Ambulance EMTs arrived to the scene and transported Miske to Erie County Medical Center’s trauma center, according to UB Now.

Miske credited Lt. David Urbanek of University Police for his survival. Urbanek started CPR on him at Alumni Arena and was helped by EMS units from Getzville Fire who administered a shock with the AED, according to UB Now.

“The word ‘miracle’ has been used to describe John being here, back with us,” Miske’s father, Peter Miske, told Urbanek as he thanked him for saving his son’s life after he was released from ECMC on Wednesday.

New program to help women in STEM overcome gender discrimination

A UB-led, multidisciplinary research team has received nearly $500,000 in National Science Foundation grants to develop the Navigate Project, which aims to increase the number of women STEM graduates who persist in their chosen disciplines and achieve leadership roles.

The training program will provide female graduate students with skills to overcome gender inequality and ultimately help solve “the gender gap in STEM fields in the United States and elsewhere,” according to UB Now.


Buffalo Police consider arming officers with tasers

Investigators with the state Attorney General’s Office who have been probing the death of Jose Hernandez-Rossy, who was shot by a Buffalo police officer last year, are looking for ways the Buffalo Police Department can prevent future fatal encounters.

Byron Lockwood, BPD’s interim commissioner, has authorized the process of looking into tasers, a “less lethal” alternative to guns, and the training that would be needed to use them, according to The Buffalo News. The Buffalo Common Council will have to vote to purchase the devices which can cost $1,000 or more a piece.

Former PTA treasurer sentenced to three years probation after repaying embezzled funds

Jennifer Seyfang, a former PTA treasurer, was sentenced to spend three years on probationary supervision for her guilty pleas to fourth-degree grand larceny and fourth-degree attempted grand larceny in Erie County Court on Friday for stealing thousands of dollars from the PTA of Lindbergh Elementary School and the Greater Buffalo Gymnastics Booster Club.

Seyfang has paid more than $14,000 in restitution to the parent group and more than $9,500 in restitution to the sports club, according to The Buffalo News.


Dozens say there were molested while FBI took a year to pursue Nassar allegations

The New York Times has identified at least 40 girls and women who say Larry Nassar, former sports doctor for Michigan State University and the USA gymnastics team, molested them between July 2015, when he first fell under FBI scrutiny, and Sept. 2016 when he was exposed by an Indianapolis Star Investigation. Nassar received an effective life sentence Dec. 7 for sexual assault and child pornography.

Some of the victims are the youngest of the now-convicted Nassar’s accusers numbering “265, and counting,” according to The New York Times.

The FBI declined to answer detailed questions about the speed and nature of its investigation, releasing a statement instead which asserted that the sexual exploitation of children is “a top priority for the FBI.”

Fatal train collision in South Carolina leaves two dead and 116 injured

An Amtrak train travelling from New York to Miami crashed into a freight train early Sunday, killing at least two people, injuring at least 116 others and spilling thousands of gallons of fuel, according to Lexington County spokesman Harrison Cahill.

Both individuals killed were Amtrak personnel, according to CNN.

The train was carrying eight crew members and 139 passengers. This is the third deadly Amtrak collision in the past three months.


Thousands of ISIS fighters flee in Syria; others go into hiding

Thousands of Islamic State foreign fighters and family members have escaped the American-led military campaign in eastern Syria, according to new classified American and other Western military and intelligence assessments. This flow of migration threatens to taint American declarations that ISIS has been largely defeated, according to The New York Times.

Other fighters have been said to go into hiding near Damascus, the Syrian Capital, and in the country’s northwest, to wait for orders sent by insurgent leaders on encrypted communication channels.

Tens of thousands protest in Athens over Macedonia compromise

More than 100,000 people protested in the Greek capital of Athens on Sunday, urging the government not to settle to a long-term conflict with its northern neighbor over its use of the name Macedonia. The dispute dates back to 1991 after the small Balkan country, for decades a part of the former Yugoslavia, gained its independence as the Republic of Macedonia.

The Greeks object to this use of name due as “it could imply territorial claims over the northern Greece region of the same name,” according to CNN.

The protests come after Greece and Macedonia restarted talks last month to resolve the conflict.

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