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NEWS
November 15, 2014 | BY MENSAH M. DEAN, Daily News Staff Writer deanm@phillynews.com, 215-568-8278
A Philadelphia jury on Friday convicted former police officer Kevin Corcoran of obstructing justice, a charge that stems from his heated arrest and quick release of an Iraqi War veteran last year. The Common Pleas Court jury of five women and seven men found Corcoran not guilty of two other charges - false imprisonment and official oppression. Corcoran, 34, a 10-year police veteran at the time of his dismissal in March, could receive up to 1-to-2 years in jail when sentenced Jan. 9 by Judge Robert Coleman.
NEWS
November 15, 2014 | BY MENSAH M. DEAN, Daily News Staff Writer deanm@phillynews.com, 215-568-8278
A FORMER Philly cop, fired for making a questionable arrest of an Iraqi War veteran last year, testified yesterday that he released the man without filing charges because of the man's military service. Kevin Corcoran, 34, said he cut Roderick King loose even after King cursed at him, challenged him to fight and refused to give his name while handcuffed and facedown in the officer's marked SUV during the wee hours of March 31, 2013. Corcoran, on trial in Common Pleas Court for false imprisonment, official oppression and obstructing the administration of law, said that King showed "a complete range of emotions" before breaking into tears and sharing that he had served in the Air Force during the Iraqi War. "I felt bad for the guy . . . I said, 'I'm going to cut you a break,' " a calm and confident-appearing Corcoran said while being questioned by his lawyer, Fortunato Perri Jr. Assistant District Attorney Michael Bonner told the jury during his closing argument yesterday that the former cop's version of events was "a fabrication, a convenient after-defense for when this defendant got caught.
NEWS
November 14, 2014 | BY MENSAH M. DEAN, Daily News Staff Writer deanm@phillynews.com, 215-568-8278
FORMER Philadelphia police officer Kevin Corcoran, who was fired after making a questionable arrest during a traffic altercation last year, was either a "rogue" cop or an "innocent man" just trying to get home safely to his family. The conflicting portrayals of Corcoran, 34, came during opening statements yesterday in Common Pleas Court, where he is being tried for obstructing the administration of law, official oppression and false imprisonment. The man Corcoran handcuffed and drove to a dark Center City alley at 2 a.m. March 31, 2013, testified that he did nothing illegal and that he felt he was at "the mercy" of an enraged cop. "I was worried because of the way he was acting," said Roderick King, 31. "I was scared that I was not safe.
NEWS
November 13, 2014 | By Mike Newall, Inquirer Staff Writer
A prosecutor on Wednesday described former police officer Kevin Corcoran as a "rogue cop" who terrorized and falsely imprisoned a man after an altercation last year in Center City, while a defense lawyer depicted the encounter as a judgment call made during a routine patrol. The conflicting accounts emerged during opening arguments and testimony in Corcoran's trial on charges of false imprisonment, obstruction, and official oppression. In an incident that led to the veteran officer's dismissal and arrest, police say Corcoran handcuffed a man and drove him to a North Philadelphia alley after the man's friend chided him for making an illegal turn in his police SUV. Corcoran released the man only after learning he was a veteran of the Iraq war. Corcoran, 34, denies the charges.
NEWS
November 13, 2014 | BY JULIE SHAW, Daily News Staff Writer shawj@phillynews.com, 215-854-2592
OOPS! Former Philadelphia Police Inspector Daniel Castro was mistakenly let out of federal prison last month and told he could serve the rest of his sentence at his Northeast Philadelphia home. What happened? Well, sources say a U.S. Probation Office revised presentence report omitted key information, which led prison officials to believe Castro was eligible for getting a year knocked off his five-year sentence for completing a prison drug-abuse program. But Castro, 51, wasn't supposed to be eligible for early release because of his violence-related conviction.
NEWS
November 12, 2014 | By Alfred Lubrano and Robert Moran, Inquirer Staff Writers
A Common Pleas Court jury Monday found former Philadelphia Police Officer Richard DeCoatsworth not guilty of aggravated assault on a longtime girlfriend. The jury found DeCoatsworth not guilty of recklessly endangering another person, but guilty of simple assault. DeCoatsworth, 28, dressed in a black suit and burgundy dress shirt, was stoic as the verdict was announced, and smiled as he hugged family members. He declined to describe how the felt about the verdict, but said he and his family were confident that the aggravated assault charge "was never going to be an issue.
NEWS
November 11, 2014 | BY VINNY VELLA, Daily News Staff Writer vellav@phillynews.com, 215-854-2513
HONEY, YOU got to slow down. A man in the throes of a bitter divorce didn't heed Prince's famous advice and let his 1990 "Little Red Corvette" roll into the Delaware River yesterday, police said. Just before 4 p.m., police received reports of a man driving a red Corvette into the river from a fishing pier on State Road near Magee Avenue in Tacony, Chief Inspector Scott Small said. Witnesses told officers that they saw the driver get out of the idling car, which he kept in drive and allowed to plunge into the river, Small said.
NEWS
November 11, 2014 | BY MENSAH M. DEAN, Daily News Staff Writer deanm@phillynews.com, 215-568-8278
RICHARD DeCOATSWORTH, the former hero Philly cop on trial for attacking his girlfriend last year, was acquitted of aggravated assault and reckless endangerment yesterday. The Common Pleas jury of seven women and five men did, however, find DeCoatsworth guilty of simple assault - a misdemeanor - for striking Sadie Martinez, 29, during an argument at the Port Richmond home they shared on May 9, 2013. DeCoatsworth, 28, who survived a gunshot blast to the face as a rookie cop in 2007, faces the possibility of probation to one to two years in jail when he is sentenced by Judge Charles Ehrlich on Jan. 26. When sentenced, DeCoatsworth will be credited with time served after spending 16 months in jail awaiting trial in this case and on unrelated assault and sex-trafficking charges that were dismissed in September.
NEWS
November 10, 2014 | BY MORGAN ZALOT, Daily News Staff Writer zalotm@phillynews.com, 215-854-5928
WHEN JOE Chambers saw sparks flying from the bottom of the police car that crashed Saturday near his sister's home in Grays Ferry, the 17-year-old volunteer firefighter knew that the cop trapped inside had only seconds to escape. So, the teen from Ridley Park - now being hailed as a hero along with another man, Dante Johnson, 24, for saving the officer's life - sprang into action: He sprinted down the block toward the burning squad car, at 28th and Tasker streets. "I started running full speed down the street and as I got to the car, the bottom of the car caught fire and then the hood caught fire . . . the door was jammed shut, I couldn't get it open," Chambers, a senior at Ridley High, recounted yesterday.
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