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Seasonal temperatures set to return Thursday

| Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2007

A streak of frigid weather should snap by Thursday, according to the National Weather Service.

Low temperatures have been in the single digits and below zero since Saturday, meteorologist Bob Coblentz said.

The temperature this morning dropped to 5 below zero, with 10 to 15 mph winds creating wind chills up to 22 below, according to the weather service.

The last time temperatures were in that range this time of year was Feb. 4, 1996, when the low was 6 below zero, Coblentz said.

Today's high was expected to be 11 and the temperature was forecast at about 4 degrees for tonight, Coblentz said.

Wednesday's high is expected to be 18 degrees, with a low of 7 and winds from 5 to 10 mph, Coblentz said.

The forecast indicates the cold streak should end after then, with temperatures in the 20s that will continue throughout the week.

Coblentz said there is a chance of minimal precipitation tonight.

He said the forecast should be clear of snowfall until Saturday, when minimal precipitation is expected again.

The cold led to school closings throughout the mid-Mon Valley on Monday and again today.

The cold snap was determined Monday to be a contributing factor in the death of Nyia Miangel Page, the 23-month-old Braddock girl whose body was found in a long-abandoned playground after a two-day search.

Dr. Karl E. Williams, Allegheny County's medical examiner, detertmined Monday that the girl froze to death.

He ruled the toddler's death a homicide because he "feels it is unlikely she got there under her own power."

Nyia, who was barefoot and wearing only a sweater and diaper when she disappeared, was found at about 3:30 p.m. Sunday along the southeastern slope of the Hawkins Village public housing project in Rankin.

The site where her body was found is located just a 10-minute walk from her First Street home in Braddock, up 17 snow-slick steps and on a wooded knoll.

Nyia was last seen alive in her third-floor bedroom by several family members about 12:30 a.m. Saturday.

Relatives reported her missing about seven hours later, according to county police Superintendent Charles Moffatt, who said an Amber Alert was issued.

"Our main focus at that time was finding the child," Moffatt said.

Police interviewed her parents, uncle, grandmother and the grandmother's boyfriend, but Moffatt said authorities do not have a suspect.

Nyia's father, William Lorenzo Page, 22, was arrested over the weekend on charges of indecent assault and endangering the welfare of children.

But court documents show the case did not involve the girl.

Page, who also was charged with simple assault and corruption of minors for the incident involving a boy, remained in the Allegheny County Jail last night in lieu of $25,000 straight bond.

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