OHIO WOMAN ACCUSED OF FAKING YOUNG SON'S CANCER: NEWARK, Ohio (AP) — A central Ohio woman faked a cancer diagnosis for her 4-year-old son and shaved his head in a scheme that convinced him and others he was dying and bilked people out of donations, authorities said.
Court records allege the boy was taken to a hospital for symptoms such as seizures. He underwent at least 20 blood tests, more than 150 hours of inpatient monitoring and other testing that found no problems, according to the records.
His mother, Emily Creno of Utica, is charged with one felony count of child endangerment. A prosecutor wouldn't discuss the possibility of more charges, The Advocate in Newark reported.
Creno, 31, didn't comment in court Wednesday as her bond was set at $50,000, and she was ordered to have no unsupervised contact with her son, the newspaper said.
Licking County Common Pleas Court records listed no attorney for Creno, who requested an application for a court-appointed defender.
Authorities say the hoax began late last year when she and others she told about the boy's cancer diagnosis created websites in support of him. One site provided updates on his condition, and another solicited hundreds of police and fire department patches, which the boy collected, The Columbus Dispatch reported.
Utica police were tipped to the possible fraud in May by a suburban Columbus woman who had a daughter with leukemia and thought some of the information in online updates about Creno's son didn't make sense, the Dispatch reported. A warrant filed against Creno in May was sealed until she was arrested this week.
Police investigated claims that 20 or more people said they donated money or goods to the family, The Advocate reported. The total value wasn't clear.
PA. JUDGE ORDERS END TO SAME-SEX MARRIAGE LICENSES: HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — A Pennsylvania judge on Thursday ordered a suburban Philadelphia court clerk to stop issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, and the clerk said he would comply but is considering an appeal.
Commonwealth Court Judge Dan Pellegrini said Montgomery County Register of Wills D. Bruce Hanes did not have the power to decide on his own whether Pennsylvania's same-sex marriage ban violates the state constitution.
"Unless and until either the General Assembly repeals or suspends the Marriage Law provisions or a court of competent jurisdiction orders that the law is not to be obeyed or enforced, the Marriage Law in its entirety is to be obeyed and enforced by all commonwealth public officials," Pellegrini wrote.
WOMAN ATTEMPTING SOLO OCEAN ROW APPROACHING ALASKA : ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A British adventurer is making her second attempt at becoming the only woman to row solo across the North Pacific Ocean, and she is closing in on an island in Alaska's Aleutians.
Sarah Outen was about 250 miles southwest of Adak in Alaska's Aleutians on Wednesday, the Anchorage Daily News (http://is.gd/M6OsAk) reported. The 28-year-old woman is hoping to land there in no more than three weeks.
She left Japan on April 27 and has been at sea for more than four months. It's part of her plan for a global trek by an ocean rowing shell, kayak and bike.
But storm intensity is increasing now as northerly latitudes will ocean surface temperatures in the tropics stay warm, said Rick Thoman with the National Weather Service.
Outen's first attempt ended in 2012 when she and another ocean rower had to be rescued near Japan after their boats were badly damaged in a tropical storm. She was shaken and boat-less when she returned to England.
LUSTER OF BALLOONS USED IN TRANS-ATLANTIC ATTEMPT: CARIBOU, Maine (AP) — Hundreds of multicolored balloons used Thursday to launch a balloonist for a trans-Atlantic crossing look like a page taken from the script of the movie "Up."
Instead of using a conventional hot-air balloon, Jonathan Trappe lifted off using more than 300 helium-filled balloons, like those used in in the animated movie.
Trappe's goal is to float across the ocean.
"The Atlantic Ocean has been crossed many times, and in many ways, but never quite like this," the North Carolina native said on his website, which detailed his efforts.
City Manager Austin Bleess said about 150 volunteers assisted in filling the helium balloons starting Wednesday night. Trappe and his balloons lifted off from a foggy softball field in northern Maine, near the Canadian border, at sunrise Thursday.