September 11, 2013 |
USUALLY prosecutors and crime victims are on the same team in court. But the family of Shane Kelly, 27, exited a Philadelphia courtroom yesterday grumbling with disgust over how Kelly's two confessed murderers were treated by the criminal-justice system. Ryan McManus, 22, the gunman, and Richard Smith, 20, his accomplice, each could have received prison sentences of 100-plus years if a jury convicted them on all counts in the fatal shooting of Kelly during a botched street robbery in Fishtown in the early morning hours of Nov. 13, 2011.
April 29, 2011 |
After spending 35 years as an insulator, beloved Fishtown fixture James "Chalk" Thompson lost his battle with mesothelioma in March, less than a year after being diagnosed. Now his family and friends are trying to fulfill his last wish by raising awareness of the disease. Thompson's daughter-in-law Leslie Gabor, of Fishtown, and other friends and family will be running in the Broad Street Run Sunday to show their support. A benefit will be held in Northern Liberties after the run, with proceeds going to the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation.
December 13, 2014 |
An undeveloped site that was once planned for a 45-story Trump Tower project on the Delaware River waterfront in Fishtown is for sale. The land, at 709-17 N. Penn St., was put on the market Thursday by U.S. Bank and other disappointed lenders who hoped to finance the Trump project. Broker Michael Barmash of Colliers International in Philadelphia has the listing. The two-acre site is zoned as a community commercial mixed-use district, suitable for a variety of uses, "most notably: multifamily, retail, office, medical or hotel," according to the Colliers listing.
April 7, 2013 |
Every Halloween for the last eight years, about 100 friends and neighbors of Jerry Feinstein and Albert Facchiano have headed for a 187-year-old stone Romanesque Revival structure in Fishtown that looks remarkably like a place of worship. They go not to pray, but to party at the annual fall festivities at Feinstein and Facchiano's home, a deconsecrated Episcopal church. Constructed in 1836, then renovated in 1921, the former Emmanuel Episcopal Church closed about 12 years ago. These days, guests walking through the entry alcove pass formal portraits of rectors and pastors, then look into a vast 5,000-square-foot space that once was the church's nave, spread out under heavy timber scissor trusses.
May 2, 1995 |
Gesturing and speaking through court interpreters for the hearing-impaired, a Fishtown woman yesterday told a Common Pleas Court jury that she was sitting in the living room last fall when three white men and a white woman burst in with aluminum bats and attacked her and her children. "All of a sudden the window smashed. It scared me," Joan Smith testified. "I jumped back . . . on the couch. All of a sudden there were three, four, five people beating on me, beating on my children with baseball bats.
October 29, 1994 |
Thirteen-year-old Nanniel Smith spoke shyly into a microphone at Family Court yesterday, describing how her family was sitting in the living room of their Fishtown home when they heard the front window shatter and racial slurs being shouted. After three white men and two white women - four wielding aluminum baseball bats - burst into the house on Marlborough Street after 10 p.m. on Sept. 23 and began beating them, Nanniel Smith said, she saw blood "gushing out the back" of her mother's head and "coming down the face" of her brother, Walter, 15. Her sister, Joan Smith, 12, testified she was struck in the leg with a bat. After yesterday's preliminary hearing, Judge Joseph C. Bruno ordered four Fishtown residents - Joanne Roberts, who lived a block away from the Smith home; Roberts' sons, Kevin Norton and Thomas Norton; and Edward Farrell, described as a family friend - to stand trial on charges of ethnic intimidation, simple and aggravated assault, burglary, possessing an instrument of crime, conspiracy, reckless endangerment, criminal trespass and terroristic threats.
June 4, 2003 |
Edward Batzig Jr. and Jason Sweeney were 16-year-old boys who liked to pal around in their Fishtown neighborhood, playing video games or listening to the radio. Two summers ago, Jason went to the Shore with Eddie's family. Later that summer, Eddie vacationed with Jason's family in Florida. They were good friends, maybe best friends. Early yesterday at Police Headquarters, Eddie told his parents he killed Jason. "He told me he did," Edward Batzig Sr. said. "He confessed to the police.
September 11, 2014 |
Todd Carmichael and JP Iberti were at the top of their game, famous for their particular specialty: La Colombe coffee. Then each took up a hobby, creating another specialty. Soon, each became obsessed. For Carmichael, it was distilling; he even set up a legal still - though he calls it "moonshining" - at La Colombe's roasting plant in Port Richmond. Meanwhile, Iberti revived his love of baking and set up an oven. "On Fridays, we'd make food for the staff and JP would be baking bread and I'd send them home with rum," said Carmichael, the globe-trotting entrepreneur who also stars in the Travel Channel series Dangerous Grounds . "We were getting very, very good at it, and we said, 'Well . . . we should share it with the world.
June 6, 2015 |
There's a simple reason so many of Philadelphia's great religious buildings have been falling to the wrecking ball: Nobody is left to love them anymore. That's not the case with St. Laurentius Roman Catholic Church in Fishtown, built in 1882 with nickels and dimes collected by the neighborhood's Polish community. When the Archdiocese of Philadelphia announced in March that it planned to demolish the brownstone church at Berks and Memphis Streets - presumably to sell off the land for house lots - its partisans rushed to the virtual barricades to hold off the wrecking crew.
September 10, 2015 |
About four years ago, Tom Lovelund decided he wanted to buy what's called a trench watch - a timepiece for the wrist born after pocket watches became impractical in World War I combat - but they were rare and, therefore, extremely expensive. So the Fishtown resident set out to create his own, enlisting his mechanically oriented dad for help. "We spent six to eight months figuring out how to do this process," Lovelund, 30, recalled. When he showed his finished masterpiece to buddy Adam Feld, 32, his friend was impressed.