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NEWS
April 17, 1987 | BY JAY S. POLIS
Remember the great crackdown? On Feb. 19, U.S. Attorney General Ed Meese charged into Philadelphia, walked along 8th and Butler Streets with Mayor Goode, and declared before blazing TV lights that a great victory had been won in the war against drugs He was here to announce one of the biggest drug "sweeps" in the city's history, a 12-month police effort that netted from 800 to 1,000 arrests, and seemed to hold out to the besieged residents of...
NEWS
September 2, 2010 | By Walter Phillips
Philadelphia suffers from the highest per-capita fugitive rate in the country, with 47,000 defendants on the streets having skipped bail, as The Inquirer reported last year. There is a cheap, practical way to deal with this problem that has not been widely discussed: The city's judges should try in absentia all defendants who are freed on bail and deliberately fail to appear in court. Most of the defendants who have thumbed their noses at the system figured that, rather than appear, testify, and face cross-examination, they had better odds of beating the rap if they simply didn't show up. Despite Philadelphia's abysmal conviction rate, they were right.
NEWS
March 16, 1989 | By Susan Caba, Inquirer Staff Writer
Eugene Milano, who was to go on trial for murder yesterday with Nicodemo Scarfo and seven others, has said he wants to cooperate with authorities, law enforcement officials said yesterday. As a result, the Scarfo trial was postponed at least until today, and defense attorneys said the defection might lead them to ask for selection of a new jury - meaning an additional delay. Milano apparently telephoned authorities from prison on Tuesday. Scarfo, the other co-defendants and the defense attorneys - including Milano's own attorney - learned of his decision yesterday just minutes before opening statements were to begin in Common Pleas Court.
NEWS
April 8, 1986 | By RON AVERY, Daily News Staff Writer
Testimony in the murder trial of two Mount Airy men has lived up to the prosecutor's early billing that the evidence would be unusual and often hard to believe. A Mount Holly, N.J., jury considering murder charges against Dwayne Wright, 21, and James Clausell, 22, both of Temple Road near Upsal Street, has heard that: Edward Atwood, 37, of Willingboro, N.J., was ordered killed in 1984 because he filed a minor complaint against a neighbor for not cleaning up his dog's mess.
NEWS
December 14, 2010 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Inquirer Staff Writer
Witness intimidation has pervaded the Philadelphia Common Pleas Court trial of two men charged with a racially tinged double murder in the Tacony section in 2007. Now, a brother of one of the defendants has been arrested in connection with the intimidation. Michael Drummond, 24, allegedly threatened a witness last week in the hallway of the city's Criminal Justice Center. Charged Saturday, he remains in custody, with bail set at $250,000, pending a Dec. 29 hearing. Gerald Drummond, 26, and Robert McDowell, 28, both white, face possible death sentences if convicted of first-degree murder in the July 13, 2007, slayings of Damien Holloway, 27, a black landscaper, and his friend and worker Timothy Clark, 15, who was white.
NEWS
March 2, 2012
The welcome decision by the Philadelphia courts to dramatically boost the fees paid to lawyers appointed to represent indigent defendants facing the death penalty strikes a long-overdue blow for justice. As long as Pennsylvania maintains what Supreme Court Justice Harold Andrew Blackmun famously called "the machinery of death," the state cannot afford to scrimp on fairness. Yet, for decades, the legal representation provided the poor in capital cases has been called into question by the courts themselves.
NEWS
September 19, 1995 | by Kitty Caparella, Daily News Staff Writer
Consider for a moment how the mighty have fallen. Reputed crime boss John Stanfa, who is supposed to wield such power over gangland slayings, a multimillion-dollar illegal gambling empire, and other illicit activities, can't get a razor in jail. His acting underboss, Frank Martines, sporting six days of growth on his face, can't get clean underwear. Nor can the other six mob guys on trial get basic toiletries or towels to take a shower. Martines' lawyer, Brian McMonagle, called it "cruel and unusual punishment" yesterday before U.S. District Judge Ronald Buckwalter, who is hearing the federal murder-racketeering trial.
NEWS
July 30, 1990 | By Susan Caba, Inquirer Staff Writer
The defense and prosecution flip-flopped last week, when one of the defendants accused of killing Port Richmond teenager Sean Daily took the witness stand and became what one law enforcement observer called "a prosecutor's dream. " The damage wasn't in what James "Bebe" Martinez said about himself and the six other defendants so much as what his presence on the stand allowed Assistant District Attorney Michael McGovern to say about the slaying of Daily. McGovern was able to recapitulate three weeks of evidence he had presented earlier.
NEWS
January 12, 1989 | By Denise-Marie Santiago, Inquirer Staff Writer Inquirer correspondent Robert McSherry contributed to this article
The scene was the Montgomery County Courthouse, but it could have been a Perry Mason rerun. An Upper Merion Township man was waiting Tuesday in the hallway of the courthouse in Norristown to testify on his cousin's behalf in a rape trial when the teary-eyed complaining witness, 34, saw him and identified him as the second man who raped her. "She just walked over to me, pointed to him and said, 'That's the other guy,' " said state Trooper Robert...
NEWS
October 5, 1989 | By Emilie Lounsberry, Inquirer Staff Writer
In a speech laced with emotion and indignation, the man who headed the elite police drug unit called Five Squad portrayed himself yesterday as an aggressive foe of drug dealers and denied ever stealing money seized during police raids. "I was a captain in the Philadelphia Police Department. I would never do anything to disgrace my name," declared John Wilson at the start of his 20- minute address to a U.S. District Court jury. "I always did the right thing. " His statement - sandwiched between opening addresses by co-defendants James Cattalo and Richard Jumper - came on the first day of their racketeering retrial.
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NEWS
September 10, 2016
By Megan Stevenson President Obama granted clemency to 325 prisoners last month, bringing his total commutations to 673, more than the previous 10 presidents combined. But as the president draws attention to the problem of mass incarceration through his executive actions, focusing on those at the tail-end of long sentences only addresses part of the problem. One of the biggest challenges to reducing mass incarceration in the United States is how we handle the 400,000 people nationwide - more than 4,000 in Philadelphia - who are incarcerated pretrial on any given day. These detainees, not convicted of any crime, are typically held in custody because they are unable to afford bail.
SPORTS
September 1, 2016 | By Les Bowen, STAFF WRITER
THE GAME ITSELF might not be all that interesting, when the Eagles host the Jets on Thursday night in the final preseason matchup for both teams, with very few starters scheduled to take part. But in the press box, at least, every set of binoculars will be trained on the field for the national anthem, to see whether anyone isn't standing. Eagles coach Doug Pederson acknowledged Tuesday that he has spoken to his team about the anthem, in the wake of rookie linebacker Myke Tavarres telling ESPN on Monday that he planned to join 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick in protesting racism by sitting out the song.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 31, 2016 | By Howard Gensler
TATTLE HAS something else in common with Taylor Swift, aside from the adoration of millions and our long legs. Jury duty. We got called to City Hall on Friday. Taylor got called to Nashville's 2nd Avenue criminal courthouse Monday and she was ready to serve - no I'm too famous and too busy and too important letter from Team Swift. Sure Taylor arrived with extra security - it must have been a drag in line behind her gun-toting guards at the metal detector - but she was humble during the voir dire process.
SPORTS
August 30, 2016 | By Les Bowen, STAFF WRITER
INDIANAPOLIS - Opponents will find ways to work the ball downfield against the Eagles. Andrew Luck put together some short, quick throws that worked Saturday night, just not enough of them to turn the tide in a 33-23 Eagles preseason victory. The Colts also hit big on a screen that turned the Birds' aggressiveness against them. But if it's safe to infer anything from the preseason, we're going to go on ahead and infer this: The days of opening the NFL's defensive rankings and automatically going to the bottom of the list to find the Eagles seem to be over.
BUSINESS
August 27, 2016 | By Chris Mondics, Staff Writer
Criminal defendants who cannot make cash bail are far more likely to be convicted than similarly situated suspects who receive pretrial release, say two new University of Pennsylvania studies. The work suggests that the inability to pay bail traps many of the accused in a cycle of criminal conduct. The studies, covering hundreds of thousands of criminal cases in Philadelphia and the Houston area, found that defendants who were unable to make bail were far more likely to plead guilty than those who had been released, after adjusting for differences in judges, defendants' circumstances and other factors.
NEWS
August 25, 2016 | By Jeremy Roebuck, Staff Writer
BELLEFONTE, Pa. - Knowing the criminal case it was building against Jerry Sandusky was likely to shake Pennsylvania State University to its core, the Attorney General's Office in 2011 went to extraordinary lengths to keep the investigation secret, case prosecutors said Tuesday. They drafted a fake subpoena - one listing a prominent person's name - to see if anyone in the office might try to leak it to the press. No one took the bait. And later, when details of the sex-abuse case were posted on a state-run court website days before prosecutors had planned to announce the charges, they dispatched investigators to determine if a Centre County district judge purposefully filed them early in public view.
NEWS
August 17, 2016 | By Robert Moran, Staff Writer
A South Jersey police officer was charged with official misconduct for offering to help a woman with pending criminal charges in exchange for oral sex, prosecutors said Monday. Robert E. Marzi, 29, who has worked for the Monroe Township Police Department for two years, was suspended without pay pending the outcome of his case. Gloucester County Prosecutor Sean F. Dalton said his office was reviewing other arrests involving Marzi for evidence of further misconduct. The criminal complaint, signed by a detective Wednesday, states that on Jan. 17 Marzi promised a woman "assistance with her pending criminal charges in exchange for fellatio.
BUSINESS
August 17, 2016 | By Chris Mondics, Staff Writer
Keith Zakarin has a tough argument to make, but that is, after all, what lawyers are paid to do. Zakarin is a partner at Center City's Duane Morris, where he chairs a practice group that represents more than a hundred career schools and colleges and industry groups. The firm is one of a handful nationwide that have made the sector a thriving, profitable practice. Its clients are largely vocational and occupational training programs; they teach a variety of trades and skills from cosmetology to nursing to criminal justice, among many others, with degree programs of up to four years.
SPORTS
August 12, 2016 | By Matt Breen, STAFF WRITER
The black SUV pointed toward New Jersey, and Eddie Alvarez began to collect his thoughts. He was scheduled to speak to a group of 300 children that came from environments similar to the one he overcame to become Philadelphia's first UFC champion. What would he tell them? Alvarez typed ideas into his phone as he sat in the backseat. His gold-plated title belt was tucked inside a bag next to him. Alvarez, 32, is one of the brightest stars of mixed martial arts. But two decades ago, he was just kid in Kensington with a dream.
NEWS
August 5, 2016 | By Maria Panaritis, Staff Writer
Pennsylvania's top elections official defended his role Wednesday in postponing a controversial referendum to extend the retirement age of judges to 75. In a filing to the state Supreme Court, where he is a defendant in a suit over the ballot question, Secretary of State Pedro Cortes said "the need for certainty" drove his decision to move the referendum from the April primary until November. Cortes, a cabinet member in the administration of Democratic Gov. Wolf, did so this year at the request of Republican Senate leaders, who later moved to reword the question to eliminate any reference to the current mandatory retirement age of 70. Senate Democrats sued to stop Cortes, but he implemented the change nonetheless.
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