August 18, 2016 |
Federal authorities Monday charged a former property inspector with the city's Department of Licenses and Inspections with extorting a bribe from a contractor. Prosecutors say John Wright, who left the department last year, "obtained or attempted to obtain" cash in July 2015 from a building contractor unnamed in court filings who was working on a property on the 5500 block of Whitaker Avenue in Crescentville. He is charged with one count of attempted extortion in a thin-on-details criminal information, a charging document typically used when a defendant has already agreed to plead guilty.
July 7, 2016 |
HARRISBURG - Gov. Wolf on Tuesday appointed Bruce Beemer, a top deputy to embattled Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane, as the state's next inspector general. In his new job, Beemer, a longtime prosecutor and Kane's estranged first deputy, will replace Grayling Williams, another onetime Kane aide who is leaving the Wolf administration for a law enforcement job outside Pennsylvania. "Bruce Beemer has earned a reputation across the commonwealth as a tough prosecutor, effective administrator and thoughtful legal mind," Wolf said in a statement.
May 16, 2016 |
Camden officials are hoping to double the size of the city's Department of Code Enforcement through a partnership with Camden County that would target deadbeat landlords, unsafe buildings, and other quality-of-life issues. The proposed shared-services agreement, which must be approved by City Council, would provide up-front funding from the county for an estimated 10 to 12 part-time building inspectors who would work only in Camden, as well as for training, vehicles, and technology such as handheld tablets, allowing inspectors to file electronic reports.
April 23, 2016 |
To call Christian Petzold a political filmmaker would do injustice to the beauty and emotional power of his work. The German director's films are informed by political passions and ideas, but they are expressed through deeply personal stories - from the 2000 breakout feature The State I Am, from the daily struggle of a pair of former terrorists who live in hiding with their teenage daughter, to 2012's Barbara , which features a stunning performance...
April 3, 2016 |
A Philadelphia judge on Friday ordered the District Attorney's Office to let lawyers for the owner of the Center City building in the deadly 2013 collapse examine the cellphone and camera of a city building inspector who killed himself days after the tragedy. Common Pleas Court Judge Mark I. Bernstein gave the prosecutor's office 15 days to deliver the cellphone and a camera that belonged to Ronald Wagenhoffer, the Department of Licenses and Inspections inspector assigned to monitor demolition of several buildings in the 2100 block of Market Street.
March 31, 2016 |
The death of Philadelphia building inspector Ronald Wagenhoffer has become a forgotten chapter in a story already teeming with tragedy: the deadly 2013 collapse that buried a Salvation Army thrift store in Center City. Wagenhoffer was the Department of Licenses and Inspections inspector assigned to the demolition of several buildings in the 2100 block of Market Street. On June 12, 2013 - one week after the collapse that killed six and injured 13 - Wagenhoffer killed himself. Now, the contents of Wagenhoffer's cellphone are the subject of a brewing legal fight between the District Attorney's Office and lawyers for STB Investments Corp., the company of multimillionaire real estate investor Richard Basciano that owned the properties being razed.
March 31, 2016 |
Maybe high on the roof, so close to the sky, roofers such as James McCullagh feel invincible, towering over the world, towering over their fate. McCullagh, 60, said as much in federal court Tuesday, before he was sentenced to prison in connection with a roofing accident that killed his good friend Mark T. Smith, 52, on June 21, 2013. "It is a dangerous trade," McCullagh told U.S. District Judge Nitza I. Quinones Alejandro in a courtroom filled with about 50 spectators, the majority of them McCullagh's friends and many cousins.
March 17, 2016 |
Shoppers once chose supermarkets for convenience, cost, customer service and quick checkouts. But a recent study found 83 percent of consumers pick only retail outlets that look clean to them, according to supermarket guru Phil Lempert . A full third of the people he surveyed have turned around and fled stores that seemed less than pristine. So just how clean is your favorite supermarket chain? The Inquirer, as part of its Clean Plates project , examined two years of health department reports for large grocers in Philadelphia and Bucks County.
March 12, 2016 |
A national investigation into claims that Veterans Affairs employees doctored records to hide backlogs in treatment for veterans found no such wrongdoing at its Philadelphia and Horsham facilities, VA officials said Thursday. The agency's Office of Inspector General said it examined complaints about scheduling problems at its West Philadelphia hospital, and noted the "archaic" computer system there. But it did not find any willful manipulation of data. In reviewing more than four years' worth of data from the Horsham clinic, inspectors found it never had more than six patients waiting for care at a time, and said "very few" had to wait more than 14 days for an appointment.
February 19, 2016 |
The Frankford building through which a six-alarm fire roared Saturday had been cited for numerous violations through the years, including fire-code issues and one citation for accumulated combustible waste, city records show. No cause has been determined for the fire, which displaced 21 people who live near the one- and two-story brick building, an L-shaped structure that fronts on both 4619 Griscom St. and 1535 Orthodox St. Executive Fire Chief Clifford Gilliam said Wednesday that officials were still investigating.