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Family Court

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NEWS
December 27, 2001 | By Nora Koch INQUIRER SUBURBAN STAFF
Officials will cut the ribbon today on the new home for the Gloucester County family court, although court will not convene until Wednesday. The structure will relieve cramped chambers at the Gloucester County Courthouse at Broad and Delaware Streets. The move to the former site of a First Union Bank at Broad and Cooper Streets will increase security for the family-court system, which handles divorce, custody, juvenile-delinquency and domestic-violence cases. The 40,000-square-foot, three-story building will contain five courtrooms.
NEWS
October 20, 2014 | By Inga Saffron, Inquirer Architecture Critic
Riding the escalator in Philadelphia's new Family Court after last week's ribbon-cutting ceremony, I overheard a woman remark that the building didn't turn out as bad as she expected, given the grubby scandal that accompanied its creation. I concur. Sure, Philadelphia's first new courthouse in a generation is a dispiriting example of bland, office-park architecture plunked in the civic heart of the city. The exterior has all the charm of a cardboard box - and the proportions to match.
NEWS
October 17, 2014 | By Chris Brennan
THE HARRISBURG porn circus consuming the state's Capitol added a third ring yesterday. The first ring: Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane last month released a selection of explicit emails sent and received by Gov. Corbett 's top deputies when he was attorney general. The second ring: State Supreme Court Justice Ron Castille and Justice Seamus McCaffery continued their long-running feud, swapping accusations this week after Castille disclosed that McCaffery sent and received many of the explicit images.
NEWS
May 27, 2010 | By Joseph Tanfani and Mark Fazlollah, Inquirer Staff Writers
After nearly two years and more than $10 million, Pennsylvania Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille has killed the no-bid development deal for a new Family Court building. Castille decided to dismiss developer Donald Pulver after The Inquirer disclosed that Pulver had made lawyer Jeffrey B. Rotwitt a partner in the project - at the same time that Rotwitt was being paid as Castille's representative. Castille said Rotwitt had never told him about what he called a possible conflict of interest.
NEWS
September 5, 2007 | By Gail Shister, Inquirer Staff Writer
In the courtroom of life, there's not much order for Philadelphia judge Lisa Richette. She's been beaten and robbed on the streets of Center City - twice. She's been punched in the head while sitting in her car. She's had her chambers taken over by a deranged woman who donned her judicial robes. And now, at almost 79, the senior Family Court jurist has been assaulted by her own son, police say. Moreover, the day after his arrest, he exposed himself on camera to a TV reporter. It's a monster hit on YouTube.
NEWS
May 23, 2010 | By Inga Saffron, Inquirer Architecture Critic
I owe the architects at EwingCole an apology for trashing their Family Court building, planned for an empty lot across from JFK Plaza, at 15th and Arch Streets. It's not the designers' fault that the bulky, 14-story building, a clone of the original, mediocre Penn Center slab towers, will be a mean and frosty rendition of America's most noble architectural form, the courthouse. Thanks to Friday's Inquirer article on the Pennsylvania courts' casual oversight of the $200 million project, we now know that the real architect of this affront to democracy is Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille, who presided over the project while it was milked for fees by a pair of political insiders, lawyer Jeffrey B. Rotwitt and developer Donald W. Pulver.
NEWS
May 29, 1991 | by Mark McDonald, Daily News Staff Writer
In the latest state Supreme Court onslaught against city court spending, 88 Family Court employees have received layoff notices and Traffic Court President Judge George Twardy has been threatened with contempt of court. Supreme Court Justice Nicholas Papadakos, in charge of the budget cuts, said the Family Court layoffs, combined with the elimination of 22 vacant positions, will save more than $3 million. Family Court currently has about 650 employees. The layoff notices, the first in Family Court, were received over the weekend and take effect July 1. Family Court Administrative Judge Jerome Zaleski is on vacation and could not be reached for comment.
NEWS
January 21, 1986
Your Dec. 30 editorial on the crisis in the Family Court was most welcome. For years I have watched the court atrophy. Instead of serving children, families and the public with the best judges and most efficient operations, the court was left to languish like a lost child. Your editorial must be heeded. The court needs an adequate staff of well- trained, compassionate and learned judges. And, as you correctly noted, the court must also be staffed appropriately. The court currently has a critical shortage of probation officers and clerical staff.
NEWS
July 2, 1992 | by Mark McDonald, Daily News Staff Writer
One of the first tests facing Judge Esther Sylvester, the new administrative judge of the Family Court, will be a choice between patronage and reorganization. At the center of controversy is the court's medical branch. Its top two employees have been targeted for removal by the city's court czar. Executive Court Administrator Geoff Gallas issued a report that describes as "counter-productive and superfluous" the $53,331 job held by branch chief John J. Fitzgerald and the $51,961 job of his assistant, Margaret J. Sosnowski.
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NEWS
October 20, 2014 | By Inga Saffron, Inquirer Architecture Critic
Riding the escalator in Philadelphia's new Family Court after last week's ribbon-cutting ceremony, I overheard a woman remark that the building didn't turn out as bad as she expected, given the grubby scandal that accompanied its creation. I concur. Sure, Philadelphia's first new courthouse in a generation is a dispiriting example of bland, office-park architecture plunked in the civic heart of the city. The exterior has all the charm of a cardboard box - and the proportions to match.
NEWS
October 18, 2014 | By Joe Dolinsky, Inquirer Staff Writer
Following years of drama, litigation, and scandal, the ribbon was officially cut Thursday on the new $122.3 million Family Court building at 15th and Arch Streets. Speakers included a who's who among Philadelphia and state court officials, many of whom were inside the marble-laden lobby for the first time, including former Gov. Ed Rendell; Kevin M. Dougherty, administrative judge; and Ronald D. Castille, chief justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. "What they get will be equal to what they see here," Castille said.
NEWS
October 17, 2014 | By Chris Brennan
THE HARRISBURG porn circus consuming the state's Capitol added a third ring yesterday. The first ring: Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane last month released a selection of explicit emails sent and received by Gov. Corbett 's top deputies when he was attorney general. The second ring: State Supreme Court Justice Ron Castille and Justice Seamus McCaffery continued their long-running feud, swapping accusations this week after Castille disclosed that McCaffery sent and received many of the explicit images.
NEWS
October 10, 2014
ISSUE | GAY UNIONS Courts proper venue In the wake of the Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage, I have little doubt we will be treated to cries that the people should decide such an issue ("Court sends clear signal to states," Oct. 7). But should we really put equality up for a vote? Did racial segregation fall as a result of a vote? The courts are designed to protect all citizens and ensure that constitutional rights are accorded to everyone. That's what happened Tuesday.
NEWS
September 12, 2014 | By Vernon Clark, Inquirer Staff Writer
A 15-year-old Wissahickon girl who police say used a brick to smash the face of a Temple University student, during an attack in which two other girls also beat the victim and her boyfriend, has been ordered to stand trial as an adult. Zaria Estes of the 200 block of Rock Street was ordered to stand trial by Common Pleas Court Judge Benjamin Lerner after a hearing Tuesday in the March 21 assault that left Abbey Luffey with a broken nose, a broken palate, and severely damaged teeth. Photos of the damage to Luffey's face and teeth were shown in court.
NEWS
September 11, 2014 | BY MENSAH M. DEAN, Daily News Staff Writer deanm@phillynews.com, 215-568-8278
CALLING HER alleged use of a brick to bash the mouth and face of a Temple University student a "determined" and "vicious" attack, a Philadelphia judge yesterday ordered a 15-year-old girl to stand trial as an adult. Zaria Estes used her shirtsleeves to wipe tears from her eyes as Common Pleas Judge Benjamin Lerner explained why the unprovoked March attack on Abbey Luffey a block west of campus was too serious to be sent to Family Court. The incident, during which two other teenage girls punched and kicked Luffey and her boyfriend, Andrew Mazer, affected the entire Temple community, Lerner said.
NEWS
August 29, 2014 | By Jeff Gammage, Inquirer Staff Writer
The fast-paced growth of Philadelphia's lower Spring Garden neighborhood quickened Wednesday, with the official groundbreaking of a massive, $160 million luxury apartment complex. The project promises to further transform an area that 20 years ago was a dead zone, and that 20 years from now may be unrecognizable. "It's overused in real estate," said Brady Nolan, one of the developers, "but every great project must have three things: location, location, and Whole Foods. " A big Whole Foods - twice the size of the current market nearby - will anchor the building, just off the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.
NEWS
August 6, 2014 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
Nicholas Kozay Jr., 86, of Philadelphia, a retired Common Pleas Court judge, died Thursday, July 31, of congestive heart failure at his home. While training as a lawyer, Judge Kozay began his career in the Municipal Court system as a clerk. In the early 1970s, he was appointed jury commissioner. He went on to implement the "one day/one trial" system for jurors. Under the one-day model, a potential juror comes to the courthouse knowing that if he or she is not chosen for jury duty by the end of the day, the obligation to serve has been met. His family said that the program was very well-received, and that he traveled to other cities to show officials how to implement it. Judge Kozay was appointed to Common Pleas Court in 1989 as a Family Court judge.
NEWS
July 28, 2014 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
Francis J. McKibbin Jr., 67, of Center City, an architect who served as manager of major building projects in Philadelphia and elsewhere, died Friday, July 18, of sarcoma at Pennsylvania Hospital. Born in Germantown, he graduated from Father Judge Catholic High School for Boys. He earned a bachelor's degree in architecture from Pennsylvania State University. He worked for Day & Zimmerman Associates, which became the Vitetta Group. He joined Alta Management as a partner with Majid Alseya, and later founded his own firm, Three Peaks Management.
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