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Investigation

NEWS
August 6, 2014 | BY MORGAN ZALOT, Daily News Staff Writer zalotm@phillynews.com, 215-854-5928
AS PERVASIVE a problem as sex trafficking is in the Philadelphia region, experts in the field say that gaps in services for victims and local funding make handling the tough cases even more challenging. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michelle Morgan, who prosecutes sex-trafficking cases in U.S. District Court in Philadelphia, said she and her colleagues are constantly faced with the daunting question of how to help victims during their abusers' trials and postconviction - and too often, there is simply no place to send them for the help they need.
NEWS
August 4, 2014 | By Craig R. McCoy and Jeremy Roebuck, Inquirer Staff Writers
Chris Conolly had just left his martial-arts class in South Philadelphia when his car was pulled over by narcotics officers. He was surrounded by men in hooded sweatshirts, jeans, and Timberland boots - with one holding what looked like a gun. Conolly feared he was being carjacked. He asked one of the men to call the police. "Are you kidding me?" the man replied, cursing. "We are the cops. " The encounter ended with Conolly under arrest, charged with resisting arrest and fleeing police.
NEWS
July 30, 2014 | By Angela Couloumbis and Gideon Bradshaw, Inquirer Staff Writers
HARRISBURG - A Harrisburg activist has asked the state Ethics Commission to investigate if an adviser to Gov. Corbett is earning his keep. In a complaint filed Monday, Gene Stilp asked the commission to determine if Ron Tomalis, Corbett's onetime education secretary turned special adviser, "was actually working for his government salary . . . and all the related state benefits," according to a copy of the complaint. Stilp also asks the agency to examine "the character and the nature of the work that is actually being done, and whether or not the required amount of work time . . . has actually been utilized for actual work.
NEWS
July 30, 2014 | By Laura McCrystal and Ben Finley, Inquirer Staff Writers
His colleagues knew that Lee Silverman carried a gun, a pistol so small it slipped indiscernibly into the psychiatrist's pocket. And Richard Plotts had a deep history with guns - one that even felony convictions wouldn't stop. Four days after the two men clashed in a shootout at a Delaware County hospital, authorities on Monday continued to investigate the violent office visit that left caseworker Theresa Hunt dead and both men injured. Plotts was still hospitalized, awaiting his first court appearance on murder and other charges.
NEWS
July 22, 2014 | By Angela Couloumbis and Craig R. McCoy, Inquirer Staff Writers
HARRISBURG - The state Ethics Commission has launched a formal investigation into allegations that four Philadelphia legislators were captured on tape accepting money during an undercover sting investigation. The Ethics Commission revealed the investigation in a letter sent late last week to Gene Stilp, a Harrisburg activist. Stilp filed a complaint March 18 against the four Democratic lawmakers, two days after The Inquirer disclosed the existence of the long-running sting and that state Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane had shut it down.
NEWS
July 19, 2014 | By Aubrey Whelan and Vernon Clark, Inquirer Staff Writers
Philadelphia police are investigating the deaths of a retired couple found in their Strawberry Mansion home late Wednesday. The couple, identified by family members as Algladys Perry, 66, and Rufus Perry, 79, were found dead in a stairwell by daughter Keya around midnight. Homicide Capt. James Clark said that there were no immediate signs of a cause of death, and that the deaths had been classified as "suspicious. " The Medical Examiner's Office will determine a cause of death, he said.
NEWS
July 18, 2014 | BY DAVID GAMBACORTA, Daily News Staff Writer gambacd@phillynews.com, 215-854-5994
JOHN McNESBY, president of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 5, leveled disturbing allegations yesterday against longtime Daily News reporters Barbara Laker and Wendy Ruderman. In an afternoon news conference held at the FOP's Northeast Philadelphia headquarters, McNesby said the union has been provided with "credible information" from a confidential source alleging that the two reporters fabricated information and provided interview subjects with cash and gifts, while reporting their Pulitzer Prize-winning series "Tainted Justice" in 2009.
NEWS
July 12, 2014 | By Tricia L. Nadolny, Inquirer Staff Writer
The former director of a now-defunct West Chester charter school is being investigated for theft after an employee reported finding scores of questionable transfers in the school's bank accounts, court documents show. LaMont McKim, who in 2005 founded Sankofa Academy Charter School with his wife, had sole control of finances at the grades 5-12 institution, a board member told borough police. Police executed a warrant last week to seize the school's financial records. McKim does not have a publicly listed phone number and could not be reached for comment.
NEWS
July 12, 2014 | By Allison Steele, Inquirer Staff Writer
A fire that damaged part of a medieval-style, custom-built Main Line mansion was under investigation Thursday as the homeowner recovered from burn injuries at a nearby hospital. The official cause of the blaze is not yet known, but a preliminary investigation suggested the homeowner's truck caught fire while he was working on it under the portico on the side of the house. The fire broke out just before 4:15 p.m. Wednesday at the home on the 200 block of Wyndom Lane in Radnor Township, Delaware County.
NEWS
June 29, 2014 | By Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Staff Writer
HARRISBURG - On Monday, Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane said she would "love to sit all day" and answer questions about her office's review of why her predecessors took so long to bring charges against serial child-abuser Jerry Sandusky. That was before her office acknowledged that she erred on a key and emotionally charged question: whether any children had been abused by Sandusky while the 33-month-long state investigation was ongoing. On Friday, Kane refused to answer questions about the issue or clarify her comments.
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