February 8, 1998 |
As a former police officer, something didn't sit right with John O'Brien when he heard the story of a Downingtown woman shot several times after she had been pulled over for drunken driving. Why, he wondered, would Downingtown police Sgt. Steven Plaugher fire seven shots at 27-year-old Mary Jane Krisovitch, who had been pulled over on Lancaster Avenue in the borough? "If I didn't use deadly force, I was going to be run over and killed," Plaugher testified recently in court.
April 3, 1990 |
John W. Hollawell can kiss $1.1 million goodbye. The 52-year-old Northeast Philadelphia man won that amount from a civil jury in 1985 for disabling injuries suffered when debris fell on his car from a city garbage truck. But he never received a penny because he wound up being arrested for committing perjury during the civil trial. Yesterday, Common Pleas Judge Albert W. Sheppard Jr. refused to allow Hollawell to withdraw his guilty plea to charges of perjury, bribery and conspiracy, and sentenced him to 18 to 36 months in prison.
August 26, 2011 |
A Delaware County jury has ordered Riddle Memorial Hospital and two physicians to pay more than $3.8 million in damages to the husband of a 52-year-old Media woman after finding that the doctors were negligent in her death. Janice Heffner, the co-owner of an eyeglasses manufacturing business in Media, died of a blood infection on Oct. 26, 2007, 14 hours after she was admitted to the hospital with severe stomach pains attributed at first to constipation. In the suit, Heffner's husband, William Heffner 3d, argued that Lawrence P. Wean and John A. Kotyo failed to treat his wife with the urgency that her condition demanded after it became clear that she was getting sicker.
March 23, 2005 |
A Philadelphia civil jury has found that a man who was convicted at age 15 of raping an 11-year-old girl did not commit the rape, and is not liable to the alleged victim for any monetary damages. The unusual verdict came in connection with a highly publicized incident on Aug. 9, 2000, in which a girl attending a Phillies game with her aunt told authorities she had been raped by three boys in the parking lot of Veterans Stadium. The girl, of Freeport, N.Y., told authorities she first met the boys, all 15, at a water ice stand inside the stadium and later encountered them in the parking lot where, she said, they led her to a secluded area and raped her. Two of the youths later were convicted in juvenile court of rape and sentenced to undergo sex-offender treatment at juvenile facilities.
September 20, 1996 |
O.J. Simpson's battle for custody of his children has been stalled - probably until the end of his wrongful-death trial, sources said yesterday. That means Sydney Simpson, 10, and Justin, 8, may remain with their grandparents for at least the next four months as Simpson defends himself in the lawsuit, brought by the families of slaying victims - Simpson's ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman. Sources said Orange County Commissioner Thomas Schulte postponed the case Wednesday after Nicole Simpson's parents, Lou and Juditha Brown, moved to introduce evidence from Simpson's criminal trial suggesting he committed the June 12, 1994, killings.
March 26, 1997 |
O.J. Simpson, acquitted of double murder but found liable in a civil trial for the deaths of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman, wants a new trial, according to court documents filed yesterday. In motions filed with the Los Angeles County Superior Court, his lawyers argued Simpson did not get a fair trial when he was sued by the victims' families. The motions called the $33.5 million in damages the civil trial jury awarded the plaintiffs "excessive" and asked Judge Hiroshi Fujisaki to reduce the amount.
February 19, 1999 |
A Delaware County prisoner was sentenced to additional jail time Wednesday in federal court for an assault on a prison guard and the guard's attorney at the conclusion of his civil trial in 1997. Nevin Jones, 30, already is serving state sentences for arson and assaulting the same corrections officer, William Bishop, at Delaware County Prison in 1995, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Gallagher. On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge J. Curtis Joyner sentenced Jones to 77 months in federal prison for the courtroom assault on Nov. 5, 1997.
May 8, 1996 |
In dispassionate tones, a Philadelphia deputy medical examiner testified yesterday that MOVE founder John Africa and his nephew Frank James Africa died quickly from the fire raging around them inside their compound 11 years ago. The pathologist, Dr. Ian Hood, said the evidence suggested that the pair "died rather rapidly, i.e. within a few seconds or a minute or two . . . a minute is probably a reasonable estimate. " But during those last moments, Hood said, the two men knew they were dying from the superheated smoke they were inhaling.
February 5, 1997 |
This time, Philadelphians reacted to the O.J. verdict not with shock but with relief. And a shrug. "I'm just glad that the trial and the attention is over with," said Robert Merryman, 25, a Philadelphia musician sitting at the bar in the Copa Too restaurant in Center City. "I think it's dragged on for way too long. " Another patron said the verdict came as no surprise. "We knew this was coming," said Mike McKinniss, 34, a Philadelphia businessman. "It was very clear he was a spousal abuser.
February 1, 1997 |
In this episode of "The Simpsons," actor Harry Shearer plays himself. Often, Shearer provides the voice for Smithers, Principal Skinner or the Rev. Lovejoy on the popular cartoon show. But for O.J. Simpson's civil trial, he is a reporter of sorts for Microsoft's Internet magazine, Slate, and a commentator for a local radio station's NPR broadcast. The way Shearer sees it, he's gone from one cartoon to another. "Every year this city plays host to the Cirque de Soleil," the affable 52-year-old comedian said the other day. "This is a far superior circus.