November 15, 2013 |
A month ago, Deborah McIlmail learned that her troubled 26-year-old son, Sean, had died of an accidental drug overdose. On Wednesday, McIlmail took an unusual first step to memorialize her son's passing - by filing a wrongful-death lawsuit against the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, contending that church officials ignored years of complaints against the Rev. Robert L. Brennan while he molested Sean and more than 20 other boys. "This is his [Sean's] legacy," McIlmail, 57, told reporters at a Center City news conference.
October 25, 2013 |
Sean Patrick McIlmail kept his secret for 12 years as it chewed away at him and as his close-knit family watched him descend into mental illness and drug abuse. On Wednesday - four days after they buried the 26-year-old - his parents, brother, and sister decided the time for secrets was over. In an interview at their lawyer's Bucks County home, McIlmail's parents, older brother, and younger sister confirmed it was Sean who accused former Philadelphia Catholic priest Robert L. Brennan of sexually molesting him over four years beginning when he was an 11-year-old altar boy. Sean's death was still painfully fresh for the McIlmails.
October 25, 2013 |
GET READY, I'm going to throw a lot of numbers at you. Every day, the Philadelphia Police Department gets hundreds of calls about domestic violence. Last year, nearly 400 daily. Every year, thousands of petitions for protection-from-abuse orders are filed. In 2011, 11,714 restraining orders were sought. In 2012, more than 8,500 calls were made to the 24-hour Philadelphia Domestic Violence Hotline. Nearly 9,000 requests were denied space in Philly's only 100-bed shelter for domestic-violence victims, which is almost always at capacity.
October 17, 2013
TV commercials pitching prescription drugs have made Americans too comfortable with popping pills that can have dangerous side effects. It's hard to believe that hasn't played some role in the quadrupling of prescription painkiller sales between 1999 and 2010 - and the corresponding quadrupling of overdose deaths from these drugs. A report by the Trust for America's Health found that more than six million Americans abuse or misuse prescription drugs. According to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most of the nation's 100 overdose deaths a day are due to prescription drugs.
August 25, 2013 |
At an open-casket funeral in the Campbell Funeral Chapel in Trenton this month, more than 50 friends and relatives gathered to say goodbye to Sharolyn Jackson. She had lived a troubled life, but the service and nearby burial celebrated the people-loving, 50-year-old mother of five. Except the woman in the casket wasn't her. She had the same forehead, figure, and hands, and they could have been sisters. But they weren't even related. To this day, no one knows who was lowered into the ground Aug. 3 at Colonial Memorial Park in Hamilton, N.J. The mistake was uncovered almost two weeks later, when Jackson was spotted at a shopping mall by a person associated with the social-service agency that saw to her needs, her family said.
July 22, 2013 |
Jaimee Drakewood hurried in from the rain, eager to get to her final appointment at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Ever since her birth 23 years ago, a team of researchers has been tracking every aspect of her development - gauging her progress as an infant, measuring her IQ as a preschooler, even peering into her adolescent brain using an MRI machine. Now, after nearly a quarter century, the federally funded study was ending, and the question the researchers had been asking was answered.
July 12, 2013 |
An epidemic of drug addictions sweeping New Jersey in "leaps and bounds" has taken an unprecedented hold in the suburbs that is far more serious than the heroin crisis of the 1960s and '70s, according to Lee Seglem, assistant director of the state's Commission of Investigation. A blistering 74-page report issued by the commission Wednesday said a network of corrupt doctors - some feeding Russian organized crime by bilking Medicaid and Medicare - has created a proliferation of painkillers and heroin, with open-air drug markets in cities and at malls in affluent communities.
June 16, 2013
Just in case you needed another reason to be nice to Dad today: New research out of the University of Pennsylvania's medical and veterinary schools found stressful experiences can be transferred to sperm, increasing the odds that offspring will have blunted responses to stress. That, in turn, is known to be linked to anxiety and depression. OK, it's a mouse study. But the findings, according to the research last month in the Journal of Neuroscience , are the first to show an epigenetic link - a genetic change caused by outside influences - to stress-related diseases passed from father to child.
March 8, 2013 |
THE AKRON ZIPS will be without the services of starting point guard Alex Abreu after the All-Mid-American Conference junior found himself in jail on Thursday facing multiple felony charges, according to published reports. The Akron Beacon-Journal reported that Abreu was arrested after accepting a "large" shipment of marijuana from undercover officers who detected the package using drug dogs. Akron Municipal Court records showed Abreu was charged with two third-degree felonies of drug trafficking and drug abuse.
February 1, 2013 |
The deadly confrontation in Berlin Borough where one man shot another with a bow and arrow was the culmination of a peculiar feud, a Superior Court judge in Camden heard Wednesday. It was a tangled tale: A spurned lover trying to reclaim the affections of a woman; a threat by that man to infect someone with HIV; allegations of stalking; a history of drug abuse - and the fatal intervention of another man. The drama came to a head Monday night outside a tidy split-level in the shadow of a concrete plant.