State briefs

Casino owners to get first

shot to bid on new mini-licenses

HARRISBURG (AP) — Pennsylvania gambling regulators will hold an auction Jan. 10 for the state’s existing casino owners to bid on the first of 10 licenses to operate a miniature casino somewhere else in the state.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board on Wednesday approved a schedule of auctions. Lawmakers authorized the new licenses in October in a scramble for cash to balance the budget.

Nine subsequent auctions will be held through May 16. The minimum bid is $7.5 million to operate up to 750 slot machines and buy a separate certificate to operate up to 30 table games.

A winning bidder’s selected location also will be revealed at the auction.

Many areas are off limits, however. Existing casinos have a 25-mile radius of protection, and more than 400 municipalities are barring one.

Pizza delivery driver shot in ambush at college campus dies

EAST STROUDSBURG (AP) — Pennsylvania officials say a pizza delivery man who was ambushed and shot on a college campus has died from his wounds.

The coroner confirms Richard Labar died Tuesday evening and that his death has been ruled a homicide. WNEP-TV reports the Domino’s Pizza driver was gunned down early Monday morning while he was delivering pizza on the campus of East Stroudsburg University.

Police have arrested three people in connection with the shooting, a 17-year-old boy, 30-year-old Carolina Carmona and Carmona’s brother Salvador Roberts. All are East Stroudsburg residents.

The public defender’s office says none of them have applied for an attorney.

An autopsy for Labar is scheduled for Tuesday.

Man accused of killing cop,

fleeing for days, to stand trial

NEW KENSINGTON (AP) — A man accused of killing a Pennsylvania police officer and then leading law enforcement on a four-day manhunt with the help of his mother will stand trial, a judge ruled Wednesday.

Rahmael Sal Holt, 29, will face trial on charges he fatally shot rookie New Kensington Officer Brian Shaw last month during a routine traffic stop.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports the driver of the vehicle testified during Holt’s preliminary hearing, saying Holt was armed and told him to “drive off” as the officer’s patrol car approached with its lights flashing. Holt ran out of the vehicle as it was moving and shot Shaw, 25, multiple times as the officer chased after him, authorities said.

Defense attorney Justin Ketchel said that Holt maintains his innocence and called the evidence against his client “scant.”

Tips from informants helped police locate Holt after a four-day search for him was prolonged by conflicting narratives told by the suspect’s mother about when she had last seen her son, officials said.

A SWAT team arrested Holt in Pittsburgh in late November and he’s being held in a Pennsylvania correctional facility. His mother has been charged with hindering his apprehension.