Philly This Week

Posted: January 09, 2012

CITY HALL

Today through Thursday

City Council is getting freshman members (above) and their staffs ready to hit the ground running. Council President Darrell Clarke has put together a series of orientation sessions focusing on the ins and outs of Council, including housing and redevelopment, the legislative process, policy and public relations. The sessions will start at 10 a.m. each day in Room 400, City Hall.

SCHOOLS

Tomorrow

It's not the postseason appearance that Philadelphia football fans had hoped for, but some North Philadelphia students are thrilled nonetheless.

Philadelphia Eagles tight end Brent Celek is expected to visit from 10 to 11 a.m. at the Anna Pratt Elementary School, on 22nd Street near Susquehanna Avenue, to talk trash. Not the "yo-momma" kind, but rather the "let's keep Philadelphia clean and understand the harmful effects of litter" type of chat.

Celek, who will present a signed jersey to the school, will meet with 100 students during an "Unlitter Us Litter Free School Zone" assembly and take photos with them. Watch for the city's recycling mascot, Curby Bucket, and the Philadelphia More Beautiful Committee's mascot, Sunray.

DEVELOPMENT

Tomorrow, Wednesday

The Philadelphia Association of Community Development Corporations is sponsoring a two-day seminar, "Economic Development Finance," in the Energy Hall at the Peco Building, 23rd and Market streets.

The seminar, taught by training staff from the National Development Council, will focus on helping people who work for nonprofit community-development corporations assist local small businesses so they can create jobs.

The seminar, funded by Citibank, requires advance registration. The fee for PACDC members is $75 for the first participant and $50 for each additional staff member. The fee for nonmembers is $125. For more information, contact Pamela Bridgeforth at 215-732-5829 or at pbridgeforth@pacdc.org.

COURTS

Today

Trial starts in the vicious Hobbs Act robbery in which the victim was shot in the eye. The victim, identified only as "B.J.," is expected to testify for the government. B.J. was apartment manager for the Walnut Lane Apartments on Nov. 1, 2010, when authorities said Corey Pasley, who had been hired as a security guard at the complex, knocked on the manager's office door shortly after 4 p.m.

An arrest affidavit said Pasley unlocked the front door to the leasing office, and co-defendant Amos Singleton burst in brandishing a revolver. Singleton allegedly grabbed B.J. and forced her to the back room of the office, where the safe was, as Pasley followed. Authorities said Singleton then slammed B.J.'s head on a desk and fired one round in her right cheek that exited through her right eye.

Today

Trial starts for former U.S. postal worker Shaning Washington, accused in the home-invasion gunpoint robbery of a drug dealer. Court papers said Washington, wearing her postal uniform, knocked on door of a home in Grays Ferry on the morning of Dec. 23, 2008, with a package in her hand. When G.B., a reputed drug dealer, opened the door, Washington allegedly pulled out a semiautomatic handgun, forced him into the house and told him to lay down on the floor.

Co-defendant Saleem Jordan, who has pleaded guilty in the case, and two other men rushed into the house. G.B. and his wife were then tied up with a cord and duct tape. The robbers then allegedly ransacked the house, taking drugs, a coin collection and packages from under a Christmas tree, as well as cash.

Wednesday

Sentencing set for Robert Johnson, who pleaded guilty in September to using a minor in September and November 2009 in Darby to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of producing a visual depiction of that conduct. Johnson faces a mandatory minimum 15 years in prison.

Friday

Sentencing scheduled for Marissa Mark. Prosecutors said that in 2006, Mark, who was living in Allentown at the time, visited the website hitmanforhire.com seeking a hit man to kill "A.L.R." by shooting him in the head. Mark allegedly contracted with a person to complete the job for $37,000. To pay for the services, Mark allegedly used three stolen credit cards and made payments to the hit man using PayPal. The target of Mark's alleged plot was not physically harmed. Mark pleaded guilty in September to murder-for-hire charges and related offenses.

- Staff writers Valerie Russ,

Regina Medina, Jan Ransom

and Michael Hinkelman

contributed to this report.

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