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NEWS
April 11, 2014 | By Ronnie Polaneczky, Daily News Columnist
IF CHRISTINA SANKEY had been an angel-faced toddler when she went missing, we might know by now how she wound up dead, half-naked and alone, between two parked cars in West Philly on a frigid winter morning. The city would've been galvanized by her death. Government officials would've promised to find out how she met her tragic end. Someone would've created a sidewalk memorial, and others would've led prayer vigils to honor the life that was lost. But Christina, 37, had the mentality of a 2-year-old, but not the physique.
NEWS
April 10, 2014 | By Craig R. McCoy and Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Staff Writers
Federal prosecutors in Philadelphia never deemed a sting operation that targeted public corruption as too weak to prosecute, according to District Attorney Seth Williams and law enforcement sources familiar with the brief federal review of the investigation. The sources and Williams say the prosecutors never came to a judgment about the investigation one way or another before the state attorney general asked them to halt their review. Their statements echo a declaration by the Philadelphia office of the FBI, which said it made no judgment about whether the case was suitable for prosecution.
NEWS
March 17, 2014 | By Angela Couloumbis and Craig R. McCoy, Inquirer Staff Writers
The Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office ran an undercover sting operation over three years that captured leading Philadelphia Democrats, including four members of the city's state House delegation, on tape accepting money, The Inquirer has learned. Yet no one was charged with a crime. Prosecutors began the sting in 2010 when Republican Tom Corbett was attorney general. After Democrat Kathleen G. Kane took office in 2013, she shut it down. In a statement to The Inquirer on Friday, Kane called the investigation poorly conceived, badly managed, and tainted by racism, saying it had targeted African Americans.
NEWS
April 12, 2014 | By Jeremy Roebuck, Inquirer Staff Writer
Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane issued a pointed challenge this week to one of the loudest critics of her decision to quash a sting investigation targeting corruption among Philadelphia lawmakers: You think the case is so solid? You prosecute it. In a letter sent Wednesday to Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams, Kane said "any law enforcement agency interested in taking this case should do so. " She added: "I invite you to contact our office to set up a time to accept the evidence.
NEWS
October 18, 2013 | BY WILLIAM BENDER, RONNIE POLANECZKY & MORGAN ZALOT, Daily News Staff Writers benderw@phillynews.com, 215-854-5255
MOST PHILLY COPS do it right. One shift after another, they put their lives on the line for people they don't know. They lock up the bad guys and try to make it home to their families in one piece. Some officers turn into bad guys themselves. They've lost their badges amid allegations of assault, theft, rape, fraud and drug dealing. At least 68 city cops have been charged with crimes since March 2009. But Officer Philip Nace - the YouTube sensation who has developed an international reputation as the angriest cop in the City of Brotherly Love - is perhaps the first Philly lawman to get benched for what a police spokesman described simply as "idiotic behavior.
NEWS
March 22, 2014 | By Thomas Fitzgerald and Craig R. McCoy, Inquirer Staff Writers
State Attorney General Kathleen Kane has hired one of the most feared litigators in the region, Richard A. Sprague, to represent her in possible defamation suits arising from accounts of her decision to end an undercover investigation that taped at least five Philadelphia Democrats accepting cash or gifts. Sprague said he would launch an investigation into the conduct of the prosecutors who ran that sting operation, which began in 2010 before Kane took office. She has said the case was mismanaged, possibly tainted by racial profiling, and far too weak for any prosecutions.
NEWS
May 1, 2012 | By Stephanie Farr, Daily News Staff Writer
A member of the Colwyn Police Department is under investigation for repeatedly Tasering a juvenile while the boy was in a holding cell last week, according to borough officials and sources. The 17-year-old boy was allegedly arrested for fighting on April 24, charged with disorderly conduct and placed in a holding cell, according to sources. The officer allegedly Tasered the boy up to nine times, sources said, for reasons that are still unclear. The juvenile was allegedly Tasered once in the head and may have been handcuffed, sources said.
NEWS
July 21, 2012 | By Angela Couloumbis and Jeremy Roebuck, Inquirer Staff Writers
HARRISBURG - Former top officials at Pennsylvania State University did not fully cooperate with state investigators in the Jerry Sandusky case, Gov. Corbett said Thursday, and are likely now the focus of an investigation by the state Attorney General's Office. The governor, who as attorney general launched the child sexual-abuse investigation into Sandusky in 2009, said investigators had subpoenaed e-mails of top university officials, but did not receive critical exchanges until after Sandusky was charged last fall.
NEWS
November 17, 2012 | By Bill Reed, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Walter Meyerle, the tattoo artist convicted of sexually assaulting 15 children over more than a decade, is under investigation for possible witness tampering, Bucks County District Attorney David Heckler said Friday. "My office is looking into the question of whether he or his agents may have sought to do illegal things to influence the proceedings against him," Heckler said. "It is an ongoing investigation; county detectives are involved. " Heckler declined to say when the investigation started and whether a county grand jury is investigating Meyerle.
NEWS
October 6, 2011
A 7-month-old girl died after being found unresponsive at a Center City day-care center late Wednesday afternoon, police said. The infant was reported to be unresponsive in a crib at 4:27 p.m. at the Apple Blossom Learning Tree Day School at 1601 Lombard St., police said. She was taken to Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and pronounced dead at 5:01 p.m., police said. The death was being investigated by the Special Victims Unit. The day-care center did not immediately respond to a voicemail message seeking comment.
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NEWS
April 15, 2014 | By Aubrey Whelan, Inquirer Staff Writer
Philadelphia police are investigating an incident in which a 21-year-old man fell to his death from an apartment building near Temple University on Saturday. The man, whose name has not been released, was visiting friends who attend the university, police said. About 12:10 a.m., police responded to a call on the 1800 block of North 10th Street, where they found the man lying in the street, bleeding and unresponsive. He was pronounced dead at 12:46 at Temple University Hospital. Police found the fifth-floor apartment from which the man fell and forced their way in after no one responded to a knock at the door, police said.
NEWS
April 12, 2014 | By Jeremy Roebuck, Inquirer Staff Writer
Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane issued a pointed challenge this week to one of the loudest critics of her decision to quash a sting investigation targeting corruption among Philadelphia lawmakers: You think the case is so solid? You prosecute it. In a letter sent Wednesday to Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams, Kane said "any law enforcement agency interested in taking this case should do so. " She added: "I invite you to contact our office to set up a time to accept the evidence.
NEWS
April 10, 2014 | By Angela Couloumbis and Craig R. McCoy, Inquirer Staff Writers
HARRISBURG - The sting investigation that caught at least five elected officials on tape accepting cash and gifts was far from dead and should not have been shut down. So said Claude Thomas, the sting's lead investigator, who spoke to The Inquirer on Tuesday about the long-running inquiry that was dropped after state Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane took office early last year. Thomas, who worked for the Attorney General's Office for more than 25 years, said the sting was "ripe for continuation upon [Kane's]
NEWS
April 10, 2014 | By Craig R. McCoy and Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Staff Writers
Federal prosecutors in Philadelphia never deemed a sting operation that targeted public corruption as too weak to prosecute, according to District Attorney Seth Williams and law enforcement sources familiar with the brief federal review of the investigation. The sources and Williams say the prosecutors never came to a judgment about the investigation one way or another before the state attorney general asked them to halt their review. Their statements echo a declaration by the Philadelphia office of the FBI, which said it made no judgment about whether the case was suitable for prosecution.
NEWS
April 4, 2014 | BY SEAN COLLINS WALSH, Daily News Staff Writer walshSE@phillynews.com, 215-854-4172
A DAY AFTER a burglary and apparent arson last week at a house owned by City Councilwoman Maria Quinones-Sanchez, authorities arrested Edwin Diana, 23, for the crime. Police say the investigation is closed and that Diana is the only suspect. But a week later, many in the neighborhood, near Norris Square in Kensington, are wondering if there's more to the story. Diana, a family friend who has known Sanchez for years, was living at a house two blocks away that, according to city records, was owned by Margaret Zapiec.
NEWS
April 3, 2014 | By Angelo Fichera, Inquirer Staff Writer
PAULSBORO A federal agency has agreed to investigate the presence of a little-examined but toxic contaminant in Paulsboro and nearby towns, just as the state appears poised to take on the issue. The U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry indicated it would investigate the presence of perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA), a type of perfluorinated compound (PFC), in the South Jersey area, the Delaware Riverkeeper Network announced Tuesday. The group filed a petition in August asking for the examination.
NEWS
March 28, 2014 | By Angela Couloumbis and Craig R. McCoy, Inquirer Staff Writers
  HARRISBURG - Republicans and Democrats in the state House of Representatives have joined in calling for legislation banning lawmakers from accepting money from lobbyists and others with a stake in state business. On Wednesday, the Republican and Democratic chairs of the House State Government Committee said they would introduce legislation to prohibit public officials and employees from accepting cash gifts from individuals, including lobbyists and the principals they represent.
NEWS
March 27, 2014 | BY CHRIS BRENNAN, Daily News Staff Writer brennac@phillynews.com, 215-854-5973
TOM WOLF, the front-runner in the May 20 Democratic primary for governor, yesterday criticized everyone involved in a controversial corruption probe run by the state Attorney General's Office. On Sunday, Wolf's four primary competitors declined to second-guess Attorney General Kathleen Kane's decision - reported a week earlier by the Inquirer - to shut down an investigation that secretly recorded four state representatives from Philadelphia and a local Traffic Court judge allegedly taking money or gifts from a lobbyist.
NEWS
March 26, 2014 | By Craig R. McCoy and Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Staff Writers
HARRISBURG - Dismayed at reports that their colleagues in the House took cash from an undercover informant, Republican and Democratic state senators are proposing legislation to ban lawmakers from accepting cash gifts. Reforms that closely mirror each other are being drafted by two Republicans - Lloyd Smucker of Lancaster County and Lisa Baker of Luzerne County - and a Democrat, Daylin Leach of Montgomery and Delaware Counties. The GOP proposal would prohibit lawmakers from accepting monetary gifts, including cash, money orders, checks, and gift cards, from lobbyists or anyone else with a stake in the legislative process.
NEWS
March 25, 2014 | BY CHRIS BRENNAN, Daily News Staff Writer brennac@phillynews.com, 215-854-5973
FOUR OF THE FIVE Democrats running for governor declined yesterday to question state Attorney General Kathleen Kane's controversial decision to shut down a corruption investigation that reportedly captured four Philadelphia legislators and a judge accepting cash or gifts from a lobbyist. "It's very hard to second-guess the statements that have been made about the prosecution, whether it could have gone forward or not," U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz said about the case. The Inquirer first reported earlier this month that Kane ended the probe that started in late 2010, near the end of Gov. Corbett's time as the attorney general.
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