State briefs

GOP lawmaker suggests Democrat who touched him may be gay

HARRISBURG (AP) — A committee meeting in Pennsylvania’s capitol was briefly derailed by a Republican representative who asked a male colleague to stop touching him, suggesting the Democrat might be gay.

Rep. Daryl Metcalfe said, “I don’t like men, as you might,” after Rep. Matt Bradford placed his hand on Metcalfe’s forearm during a meeting of the state government committee Tuesday. Metcalfe went on to say “you have people on your side of the aisle that might like it. I don’t.”

A visibly stunned Bradford laughed and said the meeting was “officially off the rails.” He requested a sidebar to discuss what he called “extraneous issues.”

Bradford’s online biography says he has a wife and children.

Neither man could be reached for comment.

Philadelphia pays $250,000

to settle police photo lawsuits

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Philadelphia will pay $250,000 to two people who say they were roughed up while taking photographs of police officers.

The Pennsylvania chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union on Tuesday announced settlements in the cases of Amanda Geraci and Rick Fields.

Fields says an officer handcuffed him and broke the screen of his phone because he was taking photos of police responding to what looked like the scene of a party in 2013. He says the officer asked him, “Do you like taking pictures of grown men?”

Geraci says an officer pinned her up against a pillar and shouted in her face because she took photographs of an arrest in 2012.

A Philadelphia spokesman says settling the lawsuits was in the city’s “best interests.”