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East Camden

NEWS
August 18, 2014 | By Julia Terruso, Inquirer Staff Writer
The reports come in - more than a dozen a week - in frantic phone calls or teary-eyed trips to the police station: My son is missing. My granddaughter never came home . He ran away again. Sgt. Janell Simpson spends every day at work investigating missing persons cases in Camden as head of the department's unit. She knocks on doors, passes out fliers, chases juveniles who don't want to be found, and, in extreme circumstances, crosses state lines to bring home abducted children.
NEWS
August 13, 2014 | By Michael Boren, Inquirer Staff Writer
It was 10:21 p.m. - past the sundown curfew at an East Camden park - when two Camden County Police officers noticed a parked silver Mercedes-Benz with a man and a woman inside. One of the officers later told a superior and others he believed the man in the car that July 2013 night was City Councilman Frank Moran, with a woman other than his wife, according to testimony from police officials before a state administrative law judge. Moran denied the allegation and demanded an investigation.
NEWS
July 25, 2014 | By Michael Boren, Inquirer Staff Writer
A Camden man died at Cooper University Hospital on Tuesday, three days after he was struck by a van in East Camden, authorities announced Wednesday. Alfredo Siguenza-Trejo, 39, had been in critical condition since the accident on Saturday, around 9:20 p.m. on 27th Street near High Street. Police said Siguenza-Trejo was entering his parked car when a vehicle hit him. The vehicle - thought to be a white van - then fled down 27th toward River Avenue. On Wednesday, a 54-second video, uploaded to YouTube by the Camden County Prosecutor's Office, revealed some details from the incident.
NEWS
July 11, 2014 | By Clark Mindock, Inquirer Staff Writer
The New Jersey Department of Education approved applications Wednesday for two new "Renaissance" schools in Camden, a move expected to lead to new school buildings in the Cramer Hill and Whitman Park neighborhoods. Mastery Charter Schools and Uncommon Schools will join the already approved KIPP Cooper Norcross Academy project. "We appreciate the opportunity to work with the Camden School District to offer a high-quality education to Camden students," Barbara Martinez, a spokeswoman for Uncommon Schools, said in an e-mail.
NEWS
July 7, 2014 | By Julia Terruso, Inquirer Staff Writer
The graffiti gang tag on the train embankment that runs along the perimeter of the Baldwin's Run neighborhood reads "Bloods West Side. " It is both an ominous reminder of the city's ills and a visual backdrop as Lorenz Bethea leaves her house in East Camden at 7:45 a.m. and heads to school. A loose dog darts across the street and a woman warns Lorenz to be careful - in case it bites. As Camden goes, this is a relatively safe neighborhood. Even so, when the teenager turns on her cellphone and tunes in a gospel station on Pandora, only one earbud is in place.
NEWS
June 25, 2014 | By Angelo Fichera, Inquirer Staff Writer
A photo from 2004 shows Jose David Ortega standing triumphantly at the site of a housing complex in Williamstown. He is wearing a tool belt and a backward cap, with a pile of wood beams to the left, a freshly erected home in the background. "He enjoyed [seeing] the house finished," said his mother, Odily Castro, in her East Camden home Monday. Ortega, 40, who went by his middle name, took delight in his work - completed houses, solid cement at his feet, his two young sons by his side.
NEWS
June 13, 2014 | By Kevin Riordan, Inquirer Columnist
East Camden Middle School student Vaughn Williams took an idea - about a place both physical and spiritual - and ran with it. Halfway across the country. In Denver on May 9, Williams, assisted by eighth-grade classmate Fredrick Henderson, addressed about 150 people during a national Youth Development Institute conference. Their presentation featured video, a logo (an empty cube), and audience participation. It centered on a notion called "The Third Space," where one can find solitude or community, stress reduction, or strength of purpose.
NEWS
June 6, 2014 | By Clark Mindock, Inquirer Staff Writer
In North Camden, five men made their way down State Street on Wednesday morning, taking the city's problem of abandoned properties into their own hands, one building at a time. Broken windows and doors were replaced with sturdy boards decorated with painted foliage. Red flowers were planted along the sidewalk. Those in the group, all but one of whom live within a few blocks of where they were working, had jobs to keep them occupied and help pay the bills. "I feel like I'm cleaning up the city, giving it a better name," said Jose Porrata Jr., who lives around the corner.
NEWS
May 16, 2014 | BY JASON NARK & REGINA MEDINA, Daily News Staff Writers narkj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5916
KIDNAPPED from her small circle of church, work and family, a good woman was killed and buried in a shallow South Jersey grave miles from her Camden home, authorities said. Fatima Perez, 41, a single mother of two, "didn't know what bad was," her sister said yesterday. "My sister was so kind, so generous. A good mother. A good sister," said Vanessa Castro, 36. "My sister was the best to everyone. So innocent. I think that's the reason why they took advantage of her. " Perez, of East Camden, was reported missing on Monday.
NEWS
May 16, 2014 | BY JASON NARK, Daily News Staff Writer narkj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5916
A MOTHER'S SOBS filled a corridor of the Camden courthouse yesterday, her voice crying out a question that only two men can ever answer: Why? " Por que ?" Fatima Perez's mother wailed. Minutes earlier inside a courtroom, the woman, along with Perez's siblings, children and other relatives, had wiped away tears as a prosecutor alleged that Perez, a hardworking mother of two from East Camden, was kidnapped and buried alive in a shallow grave in Gloucester County. The two Camden County men in orange jumpsuits and handcuffs facing murder charges, Carlos Alicea-Antonetti, 36, of Camden, and Ramon Ortiz, 57, of Pennsauken, said little and showed no emotion during the brief hearing, even as Special Deputy Attorney General Christine Shah had to pause to compose herself.
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