April 14, 1999 |
A federal judge yesterday postponed a civil trial stemming from the tragic deaths of a South Philadelphia man and his 7-month-old son who were crushed by an out-of-control police car racing to assist another officer. A day before the case was to begin in Philadelphia, U.S. District Judge Norma L. Shapiro, blaming pre-trial publicity for the postponement, ordered the trial to begin June 21, and to be moved to Allentown. Attorneys for both sides said they couldn't discuss the judge's decisions.
April 7, 1999 |
Hundreds of damaged cop cars. Dozens of injured police officers. Millions of dollars in legal costs. Innocent civilian lives ruined or lost. That's what police car crackups - from fender-benders to fatal assist-officer smashups - cost Philadelphia. City cops have been crashing almost 1,000 times a year in recent years - an average of one accident for every marked police car in Philadelphia's fleet. Despite 40 hours of driver training at the Police Academy and one of the nation's most conservative pursuit policies, Philadelphia cops seem out of control on the streets, smashing into everything from utility poles on their coffee breaks to pedestrians during calls by other officers for help.
February 8, 1999 |
The Police Department's Internal Affairs Division is investigating the circumstances under which cops last November entered the home of a robbery suspect whom many claim is innocent. The Daily News reported last week that cops may have entered the North Philadelphia home of Yusuf Warrick, 19, under false pretenses while searching for a suspect in the robbery of a pizza delivery man on Nov. 4, 1998. Warrick was charged in that robbery and spent two months in jail, despite a shaky witness identification and an alibi from his teacher.
December 12, 1998 |
Three veteran cops and a civilian employee must have thought they had the perfect scam. Strip the forfeited cars that rolled into the Southwest police impoundment lot where they worked and replace the parts with cheap stuff. Then sell the good parts and pocket the cash. No one would know - the cars had no owners and were either going to auction or to the scrap heap. Their alleged scam backfired yesterday when the four were busted and charged with a host of theft charges, District Attorney Lynne Abraham and Police Commissioner John Timoney announced at a press conference.
November 1, 1998 |
A 2-year-old Gibbstown girl was in critical condition at Children's Hospital in Philadelphia after falling into a backyard pool in East Greenwich yesterday afternoon, police said. The toddler had wandered away from her mother, who was getting her 5-year-old son into a costume at a friend's home at 251 Kings Highway in East Greenwich. About six children and four adults were in the house preparing to go trick-or-treating, the friend, Susan Tighe, said. "We did not even see her go out the back door," Tighe said.
August 18, 1998 |
I'm not going to complain. That having been said, let me complain. At first, I thought that it was just me. Now I'm beginning to wonder. My point? Is there any room for the nice guy or the good Samaritan in this city? Let me explain: Example 1: On Thursday night, July 16, around 9:30, I witnessed a hit-and-run when a truck plowed into several parked cars at 5th and Market streets. The truck did not hesitate. It weaved around several cars and took off down 5th. I put on my flashers and followed the truck across the Ben Franklin Bridge.
July 24, 1998 |
Philadelphia firefighters work to put out a burning Delaware River Port Authority patrol car yesterday afternoon. Patrolman Brian Keister, 38, of New Jersey, was monitoring traffic in the parked car at the Philadelphia plaza of the Ben Franklin Bridge when it started to smoke. Keister got out and the car caught fire at about 5 p.m. He escaped unharmed. The car was destroyed.
July 15, 1998 |
When John F. Timoney was sworn in as Philadelphia police commissioner, he said it was inevitable that things would go wrong someday and he asked the public not to "rush to judgment. " Someday is now. Things have gone wrong. In just the last 48 hours: Television viewers saw, over and over, a homemade videotape showing a group of police officers subduing a man on Belmont Plateau in Fairmount Park, the scene of the annual Greek Picnic, attended by thousands of African-American fraternity and sorority members.
May 27, 1998 |
The U.S. Supreme Court yesterday ruled a police officer cannot be sued for injuries arising from a high-speed chase unless the officer's conduct is so extreme that it would "shock the conscience. " Ironically, while the case gives more protection to the police in pursuing suspects, the decision now permits a federal civil rights suit against the city on behalf of a father and infant son who were killed last August in an accident involving two police cars. Lemore Rich, 38, and Lemore Rich Jr., 7 months, were on the sidewalk at 22nd Street and Snyder Avenue when they were struck after two police cars responding to an emergency call collided in the intersection.
May 12, 1998 |
Cop cars careened through the wet city streets yesterday, skidding and banging into other cars in their mad rush to answer four assist-officer calls from a West Philadelphia neighborhood. It was a hectic Keystone Kops scene without Mack Sennett to film it. The object of the frantic flight through the drizzling rain turned out to be a mentally disabled man banging on doors on Pennington Road near Brookhaven and sniffing fumes from a spray can. He was armed with a pair of scissors.