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NEWS
November 21, 1986 | By KEVIN HANEY and JUAN GONZALEZ, Daily News Staff Writers (Staff writer Joe Clark also contributed to this story.)
Sheriff Ralph Passio has said in the past that lack of manpower and equipment has forced his office to use a "rubber band approach" when it comes to security in City Hall courtrooms. Today, the band snapped. Two persons, including a court crier, were shot by a woman who apparently carried a gun concealed in her purse into a courtroom that had neither a metal detector nor anyone at the door searching spectators. Following the shooting, judges and prosecutors echoed Passio's concern for better courtroom security.
NEWS
December 25, 1986 | By Robert J. Terry, Inquirer Staff Writer
A Philadelphia lawyer yesterday was charged with assaulting a narcotics police officer after he threw punches at him in a City Hall courtroom and had to be subdued by other officers, police said. The lawyer, Darryl Irwin, 39, was representing a man charged with drug violations and was awaiting a court hearing shortly before noon when the incident occurred. Police said the officer, Jorge Cruz, was standing in a hallway outside the second-floor courtroom, reviewing his file on Irwin's client when the lawyer told him, "There's no need to read that stuff.
NEWS
February 15, 1991 | MICHAEL MERCANTI/ DAILY NEWS
Municipal Court President Judge Alan K. Silberstein brandishes a knife and a hook that were among some 200 weapons confiscated from individuals during the first month of the court's new metal detector program. Court aides collected hammers, knives, scissors, screwdrivers, spikes, razors and a 7-inch hat pin. Silberstein said he was surprised at the number of weapons taken in non-criminal courtrooms. "I guess you could say our worst fears were realized," the jurist said.
NEWS
July 15, 1986 | By Larry Lewis, Inquirer Staff Writer
A Montgomery County judge yesterday conducted a trial in the prisoner- holding area of the Norristown courthouse and convicted a Graterford Prison inmate who had refused to enter a courtroom to face charges of striking a corrections officer. Common Pleas Court Judge Joseph A. Smyth Jr. left his courtroom and sat behind a desk in the locked security room to hear three prosecution witnesses and then declare Michael Vance, 34, of the Tioga section of Philadelphia, guilty of harassment.
NEWS
December 16, 1986 | By SCOTT FLANDER, Daily News Staff Writer
A Municipal judge ruled today that Diani Brown must stand trial on charges of shooting her former boyfriend and a court employee in a City Hall courtroom last month. Brown, 43, of 57th Street near Kingsessing Avenue, is accused of opening fire before a courtroom filled with startled spectators after a harassment case against her ex-boyfriend was continued for the seventh time since September 1985. Wounded in the shooting were Ricky Stephenson, 30, of Yeadon Avenue in Yeadon, Delaware County, and Ramona S. Beverly, 38, of Lindbergh Boulevard near 68th Street, a court employee for more than five years.
NEWS
July 15, 2009 | By Jeff Gammage INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
He walked into the courtroom pushing the wheelchair of a political ally. He held his weeping 19-year-old daughter after she begged the judge not to send him away for too long. And he left, eight hours later, as a man headed for prison, though not for nearly as long as many had expected. The sentencing of former State Sen. Vincent J. Fumo turned into courtroom drama yesterday, a teary production sustained by hope, exasperation, anxiety, and disappointment. "I've made mistakes in my life," Fumo told the judge, his voice small and broken.
NEWS
September 18, 1986 | By DAVE RACHER, Daily News Staff Writer
Common Pleas Judge I. Raymond Kremer has had the rug pulled out from under him by a fellow jurist and is not sitting still over this moving experience. The outspoken Kremer sent a memo to all Common Pleas judges on Tuesday, citing his ouster from Courtroom 1115 at One East Penn Square, across from City Hall, to make room for Common Pleas Judge Richard B. Klein, who has chambers in that building. The change was approved by Administrative Judge Edward J. Blake. "The act of bumping a fellow judge out of a courtroom he had been sitting in for years, for some period of time, is divisive and is not calculated to encourage good relations or cooperation," said Kremer.
NEWS
December 23, 1990 | By Ovetta Wiggins, Special to The Inquirer
The defendant: Arnold Decker. The plaintiff: The state of New Jersey. Decker is being charged with conspiracy, attempted robbery and felony murder. He is the accused getaway driver in the armed robbery of a local bank, which left a guard - who was only referred to as Canine - dead. Those were the facts that Judge Robin D. Buser heard as defense attorneys David Benson and Chris Fletcher and prosecutors Deanna Buchborn and Desiree Landrum presented their cases. For Benson, Fletcher, Buchborn and Landrum, there was more at stake than a jury's verdict.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 6, 1987 | By Carrie Rickey, Inquirer Movie Critic
From the Hip is many things but consistent is not one of them. Truly - the whole truth and nothing but - this is the Jekyll-and-Hyde of courtroom comedy. Kind of a Legal Eagles meets Psycho. Judd Nelson plays Robin "Stormy" Weathers, one year out of law school and already itchy to jettison his morals if it will help him climb to the top of the Boston law firm founded by Oliver Wendell Holmes. As idealistically as Robin expresses his righteous outrage about funding cuts in preschool programs, he cynically fixes it so that he will have to defend an assault case on the docket of a senior partner in the firm.
NEWS
November 21, 1987 | By Martha Woodall, Inquirer Staff Writer
Two fourth graders from Friends Central School in Lower Merion yesterday got a first-hand taste of the unpredictability of American justice. One jury of their peers acquitted Hilary Marston and Evelyn Bricklin of misdemeanor charges for allegedly violating National Park Service regulations by demonstrating without a permit at Independence Park. Another jury decided it could not reach a verdict. The conflicting outcome came after two classes of sometimes-fidgety youngsters took extensive notes and considered the same evidence during a mock trial before U.S. District Judge Louis H. Pollak.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
July 20, 2015 | BY JULIE SHAW, Daily News Staff Writer shawj@phillynews.com, 215-854-2592
A MAN WHO voiced displeasure outside a Criminal Justice Center courtroom in April - after which cops confronted him and a female public defender came to his aid - pleaded guilty yesterday to a summary offense of disorderly conduct. Under a negotiated plea deal between the prosecution and the defense, Anthony C. Jones, 23, was then sentenced by Municipal Judge Charles Hayden to "no further penalty. " Jones' case made news because the public defender who came to his aid, Paula Sen, reportedly was punched in the head by a cop who was trying to tackle Jones.
NEWS
July 17, 2015
J OSEPH DOUGHERTY, the 73-year-old former labor leader awaiting sentencing next week on a federal racketeering conviction, just found out the hard way that not even Shakespeare can soften the blow of a judge's gavel. U.S. District Judge Michael Baylson yesterday rejected Dougherty's Hail Mary motion for an acquittal or a new trial. Baylson began the ruling thusly: "Who finds the heifer dead and bleeding fresh, And sees fast by a butcher with an axe, But will suspect 'twas he that made the slaughter?"
NEWS
May 13, 2015 | By Helen Ubinas, Daily News Columnist
SOMEWHERE BETWEEN Municipal Judge Frank Brady's first and third deep sigh inside courtroom 503 yesterday, I thought someone was finally going to put an end to a case one lawyer called "the dumbest criminal case of all times. " The 2014 school fight I wrote about last week was marked on the docket as "Must Be Tried. " Not a lot of room for interpretation, I thought. But then Assistant District Attorney Lauren Realberg asked for a continuance because a school officer, who she said was necessary to the case, injured her ankle and was not able to be in court.
NEWS
May 11, 2015 | BY MORGAN ZALOT, Daily News Staff Writer zalotm@phillynews.com, 215-854-5928
DURING GRAPHIC testimony yesterday, a former Philadelphia deputy medical examiner snaked a belt around prosecutor Peter Lim's neck, demonstrating for a jury how he believes Dr. Melissa Ketunuti's killer tightened a leather belt around her neck before setting her body on fire. Dr. Gary Collins, now Delaware's chief medical examiner, testified for the prosecution on the third day of trial for 39-year-old Jason Smith. Smith is the exterminator accused of killing Ketunuti, 35, before binding her neck, wrists and ankles and setting her body ablaze Jan. 21, 2013 when he visited her Southwest Center City rowhouse to address a rodent problem.
NEWS
April 18, 2015 | By Mark Fazlollah, Inquirer Staff Writer
What started as a simple dispute when Anthony S. Jones refused to remove his hat in a courtroom escalated, with Jones facing serious charges, a public defender alleging she was punched by a Philadelphia police officer, and claims of police misconduct. Last Friday in Municipal Court Judge Marvin Williams' courtroom, Jones, who was in the Criminal Justice Center as a defendant on another matter, was ordered by an official to remove his hat. According to the police report, Jones, 22, of the Rhawnhurst section of the city, was screaming and cursing in the hallway after he was ejected from the courtroom.
NEWS
February 19, 2015 | BY JULIE SHAW, Daily News Staff Writer shawj@phillynews.com, 215-854-2592
A COURTROOM rumble erupted yesterday afternoon after an Overbrook man, convicted of murder in a 2013 robbery of a special-needs man for his headphones, cursed at a deputy sheriff. The two got physical, prompting cops to jump in from the gallery to control the chaos. The brawl happened after Arkel Garcia, 21, was convicted by a jury of second-degree murder, robbery and a firearms offense. After the jury of 10 women and two men was escorted out, Common Pleas Judge Steven Geroff proceeded to sentence Garcia, who faces a mandatory sentence of life in prison without parole in the death of Christian Massey, 21, a West Philly native who graduated from Marple Newtown High School.
NEWS
February 19, 2015 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Inquirer Staff Writer
A courtroom brawl aborted Tuesday's sentencing of the West Philadelphia man who had just been found guilty of felony murder in the 2013 robbery of a special-needs man for his brand-new Beats by Dre headphones. The chaos erupted when Arkel Garcia, 21, stood to be sentenced to a mandatory life sentence for the Nov. 30, 2013, shooting death of Christian Massey. Garcia stood up suddenly and the heavy wooden courtroom chair he had been using tipped over behind him, next to Deputy Sheriff Sgt. Robert Castelli.
NEWS
December 24, 2014 | By Michael Boren, Inquirer Staff Writer
The case of a Temple University student who sued her parents for tuition - after more than a year of courtroom drama that featured shouting matches between lawyers and a tearful plea from the mother - is headed for a new venue. The Appellate Division of New Jersey's Superior Court will take up Caitlyn Ricci's case, which until Monday had been heard by two Camden County judges. "This is a very difficult case," Judge Donald Stein said before sending the case to the appeals court. "I've really never seen a family torn apart the way this family is torn apart, and it's a tragedy.
NEWS
November 6, 2014 | BY DAVID GAMBACORTA & JULIE SHAW, Daily News Staff Writers gambacd@phillynews.com, 215-854-5994
CHRISTOPHER Saravello, a former Philly cop, was federally indicted yesterday for allegedly running an extortion scheme when he was still on the force. The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania said Saravello, 37, worked with three middlemen to allegedly shake down local drug dealers and drug buyers to the tune of $9,800 worth of drug money, Oxycontin and other narcotics. City payroll records show that Saravello joined the police force in 2007. The extortion scheme ran between November 2011 and June 2012, when he was assigned to Chinatown's 6th District.
NEWS
September 29, 2014 | BY MENSAH M. DEAN, Daily News Staff Writer deanm@phillynews.com, 215-568-8278
ALI MARSH is the kind of first-degree murder defendant that you're not likely to forget. Shortly after taking the witness stand in his own defense yesterday, Marsh somewhat humbly said he had a speech impediment, a condition he's had all his life. He did stutter some in proclaiming his innocence while being questioned by defense lawyer Coley Reynolds about the March 5, 2012, home-invasion murder of a Strawberry Mansion man and the critical wounding of the man's wife. But during cross-examination by Assistant District Attorney Jennifer Selber, Marsh's speech impediment appeared to clear up as he repeatedly accused Selber and Common Pleas Judge Jeffrey Minehart of trying to "railroad" him. "Y'all been trying to trip me up. . . . That's not fair.
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