March 19, 2009
THE COMMITTEE of Seventy (run by the former editor of the Daily News) is a great source for voting information and a voice on ethics, but its report on the city row offices asserts their role as the kind of growling watchdog this city sorely needs. In bracing language, "Needless Jobs: Why Six Elected City Positions Should Die" makes a compelling case for eliminating the clerk of quarter sessions, the three city commissioners, the sheriff and the register of wills as independently elected offices.
October 8, 2012 |
John Thompson spent 14 years on death row in Louisiana's notorious Angola state prison before he was sprung by two Philadelphia lawyers acting on a hunch. Only hours after a Louisiana state judge issued a writ of execution for Thompson, a private investigator sent by his lawyers to search the files of the New Orleans district attorney found blood evidence showing that Thompson was not guilty of one of the charges. The murder conviction was overturned and Thompson won a $14 million jury award in a lawsuit alleging prosecutorial misconduct.
January 10, 2008 |
NICHOLAS Yarris spent 22 years on Pennsylvania's death row, convicted in 1982 of raping and murdering a Delaware County woman then dumping her body in a church parking lot. For those lost years, he has now earned $500 a day. Yesterday, Yarris, 46, received the last installment of a recent $4 million cash settlement in a malicious-prosecution lawsuit against Delaware County. The civil suit was first filed in U.S. District Court in 2004, eight months after Yarris was released from prison, having spent 8,057 days there - the first man exonerated by DNA evidence from Pennsylvania's death row. Now, Yarris must learn how to live a life not entwined with prisons, courts and that now-ambiguous word - justice.
April 26, 1991 |
A small-time hood who spent four years on death row for a mob hit he didn't commit was sentenced yesterday to 25 months in jail on a drug rap. Neil Ferber, bracing for the worst, gripped a courtroom lectern as U.S. District Judge Thomas O'Neill imposed a sentence far below federal sentencing guidelines. He gave Ferber credit for the 45 months spent on death row. O'Neill said he did not believe the federal commission ever considered a case as "rare" as Ferber's when it drafted sentencing guidelines.
June 4, 1998
In 1996, 3,219 people were living on death row in the United States. How many of them were there simply because they were black? It's a long-recognized fact that the death penalty has been used more often against blacks than against whites convicted of similar crimes. New state laws were supposed to change that. But research, some conducted in Philadelphia, shows that it hasn't happened. The American judicial system continues to be jury-rigged to discriminate on the basis of race.
October 26, 1994 |
Ronald "Bootsy" Collins, 29, won't have to visit his brother on death row anymore. He'll soon be within shouting distance. Yesterday, after a jury ordered Collins, of Wyalusing Avenue near 55th Street, to die for two murders on April 6, 1992, Common Pleas Judge Eugene H. Clarke Jr. imposed the sentence on the emotionless defendant. His brother, Rodney Collins, 27, is awaiting execution for a separate 1992 murder. Assistant District Attorney Edward Cameron said Ronald Collins shot and killed Dawn Anderson, 26, and David "Dickie" Sisco, 41, while they slept in separate bedrooms in a drug house on 60th Street near Haverford Avenue.
January 27, 2000 |
Stuffed inside the shrink wrap alongside my subscriber copy of February's Talk magazine is a glossy new Benetton catalog titled "We, on Death Row. " This elegant advertorial product intersperses color photographs of death-row inmates with somber quotations about the evils of capital punishment from Pope John Paul II, the Dalai Lama, Martin Luther King Jr. and other giants of the fashion industry. The mostly one-piece garments worn by the inmates, which come in bright hues, are not, I presume, actually available at Benetton outlets.
February 6, 2012 |
BEFORE LAST WEEK, the main question posed to 76ers coach Doug Collins and his team was about the next 2 weeks, which included seven games against some of the top teams in the league. Wins against Orlando and Chicago were impressive, before Friday night's 20-point loss to the Miami Heat. In that game, the Sixers stayed close before a 15-0 run by Miami in the final quarter allowed it to pull away. After the game, forward Andre Iguodala put it best: "You have to give [Miami]
May 7, 2006 |
She was just 17, a tall, slender teen who loved long fingernails and gold jewelry and dreamed of one day owning a hair salon. He was 21, an aspiring singer known as "Shorty" who sang in the church choir, led his own Temptations-style band, and hoped to make it big in R&B. Chedell Williams' hopes ended in a pool of blood outside the Fern Rock train station when she was gunned down on a sunny October afternoon in 1991 - killed for her gold...
November 26, 1986
In reference to the Nov. 8 article written about Pennsylvania death-row conditions, I agree with what Deputy Attorney General Maria Parisi Vickers said, and I am sure many more agree with her arguments. Prisoners are provided the necessities. We tend to worry too much about the comfort and conditions of prisoners on death row. What about the condition of decent, tax-paying citizens who live in worse situations? Save that money and spend it on streets, housing, health, etc. for people who try to build and support our state, not the ones who bring this state down.