June 19, 2014 |
Schuylkill County Register of Wills Theresa Santai-Gaffney is trying to pick up where Gov. Corbett left off and defend Pennsylvania's previous same-sex marriage ban. In May, U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III declared the ban unconstitutional, and gay and lesbian couples across the state began tying the knot. Santai-Gaffney has asked Jones to put his ruling on hold and allow her to intervene in the case. If Jones - or a higher court - grants her request, it could halt to same-sex marriage in Pennsylvania, and increase pressure on the U.S. Supreme Court to resolve a disjointed patchwork of laws nationwide.
May 13, 2011 |
TWENTY-SIX YEARS ago today, Philadelphia police dropped a bomb on what had once been a quiet leafy neighborhood on Osage Avenue, near Cobbs Creek Park. But Milton Williams is tired of talking about the bomb that started a fire that killed 11 people in the MOVE house and destroyed 61 homes. "I want to know what the city is going to do now," said Williams, 62. "What are they going to do with all of these empty houses?" Williams' community is still home to people who once worked as teachers, nurses, clerical workers, carpenters, police officers, roofers and truck drivers.
March 28, 2013 |
The U.S. Supreme Court, in a decision released Wednesday, voted 5-4 along ideological lines in favor of Comcast Corp. in a consumer class-action lawsuit that has been grinding its way through the Philadelphia federal courts since December 2003. The suit claims to represent two million Philadelphia-area Comcast TV customers who it says were harmed by anticompetitive business practices, and seeks $875 million in damages. The courts in Philadelphia certified the consumers as a class to collectively sue, but the Supreme Court overturned their rulings.
January 29, 1997 |
Lawyers and plaintiffs are gathered at a press conference yesterday to announce a class-action lawsuit alleging discriminatory practices against female applicants for the SEPTA police. Seated are attorney Heather Bendit (left), plaintiff Altovise Love, and attorney Lisa Rau. Also present were plaintiffs Catherine Lanning and Belinda Kelly Dodson.
December 17, 2011 |
The builder of two private juvenile-detention centers at the heart of the "kids for cash" corruption case has agreed to pay $17.75 million to settle all civil-rights claims that resulted from the scandal, lawyers said Friday. Robert K. Mericle's construction company built the for-profit detention facilities that replaced the Luzerne County detention center. Mericle and Robert Powell, who co-owned the centers, paid several million dollars to two county judges, one of whom sentenced juveniles to the facilities from 2003 to 2008.
May 7, 2000 |
On Feb. 2, 1978, a spectacular fire erupted at an illegal chemical dump in Chester. More than 200 emergency workers were unwittingly exposed to toxic industrial wastes. High rates of cancer and other serious illnesses have beset the group ever since. Today, in the conclusion of an eight-day series, the legacy - and the unfinished business - of the Wade dump fire. Lillian Cornish could not stop trembling. Maria Boyle felt cowed and alone. Judy McLaughlin was upset, yet relieved to have it over with.
October 22, 2011 |
A federal judge has dismissed a civil rights lawsuit by some Lower Merion School District parents, students, and former students who claimed the district discriminated against them and other African American students by disproportionately and inappropriately placing them in special-education programs and in the lowest-level classes. The ruling in Amber Blunt et al v. Lower Merion School District et al was handed down Thursday by U.S. District Judge Harvey Bartle 3d, who wrote that there was "no direct or circumstantial evidence of racial discrimination.
June 17, 1998 |
A group of Liberian immigrants has sued five present and former Darby Borough police officers, alleging that they broke up a children's birthday party without cause, then assaulted and arrested at least six adults. The suit, filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Philadelphia, says the plaintiffs - seven adults and seven children - were "subjected to an extreme and outrageous invasion of privacy" and in some instances suffered serious bodily harm on June 29, 1996. The suit charges that the officers, all of whom are white, acted out of racial and ethnic bias against the plaintiffs, all of whom are black.
July 11, 2012
Montgomery County Commissioners Chairman Josh Shapiro, a Democrat, and seven other local plaintiffs filed an appeal Monday opposing the state's latest Republican-drawn redistricting plan. The most recent maps - released June 8 - would divide Montgomery County into eight Senate and 19 House districts, none of which lies entirely within the county, and cut district lines through several townships and boroughs. The plaintiffs called the plan "overtly political" and argued that it violates a state constitutional mandate to keep counties and cities together in one representative district "unless absolutely necessary.
March 16, 2011 |
Throughout the bitterly fought legal battle over allegations that Chevron despoiled hundreds of square miles of once-pristine Amazon jungle in eastern Ecuador, rife as it is with charges of fraud and corruption, the plaintiffs consistently have argued their science is sound and the Ecuadoran judicial system is well-equipped to evaluate it. But on March 7, their case was dealt a severe setback. U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan, ruling in Manhattan, unleashed a withering broadside barring the plaintiffs, at least for the moment, from seeking to enforce an $18 billion judgment handed down by an Ecuadoran judge against Chevron.