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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
August 28, 2013 | By John P. Martin, Inquirer Staff Writer
Masha Allen was once called the Internet's "most famous little girl" - for the most horrific of reasons. A Russian orphan, Allen was adopted at age 5 by a Pittsburgh businessman who sexually abused and exploited her online for years. Her widely circulated images came to personify the darkest corners of the Internet. After being rescued in 2003, Allen took her story public. Congress was so moved that it passed a law in her name, giving child pornography victims the right to recoup damages from anyone caught with their images.
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...
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NEWS
May 24, 2015 | BY JULIE SHAW, Daily News Staff Writer shawj@phillynews.com, 215-854-2592
A SECOND WOMAN was held for trial yesterday in the savage beating of a homeless man at an Olney gas station last month. Shareena Joachim, 23, will face trial on charges of attempted murder, aggravated assault, conspiracy and related offenses in the April 7 attack on Robert Barnes, 51, who remains in a coma. During a preliminary hearing in Family Court, Common Pleas Judge Richard Gordon viewed video of the attack and heard a police statement given by Joachim. Joachim was one of six defendants charged in the attack at the Sunoco gas station on 5th Street near Somerville Avenue.
NEWS
May 24, 2015 | BY JULIE SHAW, Daily News Staff Writer shawj@phillynews.com, 215-854-2592
A NORTH PHILLY teen yesterday waived his preliminary hearing in an April hit-and-run accident of a Temple student and is likely to plead guilty in the case. Rashan Roberts, 18, is "inclined to own up to all responsibilities that he has under all the circumstances," his attorney, Michael Hanamirian, said outside court. The victim, Rachel Hall, 22, a Temple senior who played on the school's lacrosse team as its goalkeeper, remains unconscious, but has made a little progress by opening her eyes, Assistant District Attorney David Lim said.
NEWS
May 21, 2015 | BY JULIE SHAW, Daily News Staff Writer shawj@phillynews.com, 215-854-2592
FOUR MEN arrested last week as part of an alleged 16-member "serial-robbery gang" pleaded not guilty in federal court yesterday and were ordered to remain in custody pending trial. Attorneys for defendants Levern Jackson, 45, of Philadelphia, and Jamal Doggett, 35, of Willingboro, N.J., argued for their clients to be released to home confinement, but U.S. Magistrate Carol Sandra Moore Wells ordered them held in custody. Meanwhile, attorneys for defendants Mark Woods, 46, and Marcus Bowens, 24, both of Philadelphia, agreed for their clients to be held in custody pending trial.
NEWS
May 20, 2015 | Inquirer Editorial Board
Any police officer who has had to bite his tongue as he watched a suspect walk free after a jury trial would likely agree with the statement that a not-guilty verdict isn't the same as innocence. Remember that in considering last week's acquittal of six former members of an elite Philadelphia police narcotics unit accused of corruption. While a federal jury did not convict the accused, more than 80 pending lawsuits addressing their behavior suggest this story isn't over. A lawyer for one of the defendants had the audacity to say Police Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey owes an apology to the former officers he fired.
NEWS
May 16, 2015 | By Paul Nussbaum, Inquirer Staff Writer
Joseph Boardman, chief executive of Amtrak, defended Amtrak's safety record Thursday, even as he lamented that Tuesday's deadly derailment may "have destroyed the confidence of people" who ride the railroad. He also said Amtrak has been underfunded for decades and must have more money to rebuild the century-old underpinnings of the Northeast Corridor, the nation's busiest rail route. He said Amtrak officials have not interviewed the engineer of Train 188, who apparently was operating the train at twice the 50-mile-per-hour speed limit entering a sharp curve in Port Richmond.
NEWS
May 15, 2015 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Inquirer Staff Writer
A Philadelphia judge is considering a defense motion that would bar prosecutors from using the results of blood tests on the excavator operator involved in 2013's building collapse that flattened a Salvation Army thrift store, killing six people. Common Pleas Court Judge Glenn B. Bronson ordered defense lawyer William Davis and Assistant District Attorney Edward Cameron to return to court Thursday, when he might rule. In a hearing Wednesday, Davis argued that police did not have probable cause to order a hospital nurse to test the blood of Sean Benschop as he lay on a gurney shortly after the June 5, 2013, collapse at 2136 Market St. Benschop, 43, and Griffin Campbell, 51, the demolition contractor who hired Benschop, were each charged with six counts of third-degree murder - one for each person killed - and 13 counts of reckless endangerment for each of those injured.
NEWS
May 15, 2015 | BY ANNIE PALMER, Daily News Staff Writer palmera@phillynews.com, 215-854-5927
FOR TWO YEARS, a 16-member "serial-robbery gang" based in Philly carried out a string of home invasions, including an elaborate heist in which members posed as police and wig-clad victims. Yesterday, law-enforcement officials announced the arrests of 12 suspected members, ending what authorities called an "audacious crime spree. " Four of the defendants were arrested yesterday morning, said Louis Lappen, first assistant U.S. attorney. The gang's alleged ringleader, Khalil "Lil" Smith, was already in custody from a prior robbery.
SPORTS
May 12, 2015
Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg defended his decision to use Jeanmar Gomez instead of Ken Giles in the eighth inning of the 7-4 loss Sunday. The Phillies trailed by a run heading into the eighth. Giles threw just 11 pitches Friday, his first outing after three days of rest. Sandberg said he does not like to use Giles and some of the other relievers when the team is trailing. Gomez had not pitched in a win since April 11. Nine of his 11 appearances have come in a Phillies loss. He allowed three hits in the eighth, none more crushing than Johnny Monell's two-run pinch-hit double.
SPORTS
May 9, 2015 | By Marc Narducci, Inquirer Staff Writer
Union defender Sheanon Williams has gone from franchise cornerstone to a player battling to remain in the starting lineup. Like many of his teammates, the 25-year-old Williams has gotten off to a rough start this year for the 1-6-3 Union, who visit the Vancouver Whitecaps (5-3-2) on Saturday. Williams is part of a defense that has surrendered 18 goals, the most in Major League Soccer. Union coach Jim Curtin has moved Williams to the left outside back spot, with Ray Gaddis switching over to the right.
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