April 11, 2015 |
A self-described ordained preacher faces the prospect of life in prison after pleading guilty Thursday to federal charges that he helped detain, abuse, and exploit mentally disabled people held captive in what has become known as Philadelphia's Tacony dungeon case. Eddie Ray Wright, 54, became the second of five defendants to plead guilty in a scheme whose alleged ringleader, Linda Ann Weston, is charged with defrauding the Social Security Administration by targeting, confining, and abusing people while stealing their disability benefits.
March 27, 2015 |
TWO WOMEN testified yesterday to similar accounts of how a man in a white pickup truck drove each of them, on separate occasions, to Pennypack Park in Northeast Philadelphia, then brutally raped them. After hearing their testimonies, Municipal Judge Teresa Carr Deni held defendant Robert Palen, 39 - the most recent high-profile alleged Pennypack Park rapist - for trial on charges of rape, aggravated assault and related offenses. One woman, 31, tearfully testified that a little after 7 p.m. Aug. 1, 2010, she was hanging on the corner of Disston Street and Torresdale Avenue in Tacony when Palen, whom she did not know, circled around her in a white "utility" pickup truck.
November 23, 2014 |
Miriam E. McBride Rawley, 90, of Tacony, a mother and singer, died Friday, Nov. 14, of Alzheimer's disease at the Philadelphia Protestant Home in Lawncrest. Born in 1924 in Philadelphia, Mrs. Rawley lost her mother early. She and her four siblings grew up with their father, Francis McBride, and stepmother, Maude Whelan, on a horse farm in Hilltown, Bucks County. After the family moved back to the city, Mrs. Rawley became a member of the first graduating class of St. Hubert High School in 1942.
November 15, 2014 |
A JURY yesterday awarded $45 million to Tamara Breeden, one of four mentally disabled victims rescued from a squalid Tacony dungeon in 2011, after hearing evidence that she had been kidnapped, starved, beaten and prostituted for 10 years. Breeden, 33, told the panel on Wednesday that Linda Ann Weston forced her to use a bucket when she needed to go to the bathroom, made her drink her own urine, knocked her teeth out with a hammer, beat her with a metal bat, took her babies away and barely fed her. The Common Pleas jury spent one hour, 20 minutes deliberating before awarding $40 million in compensatory damages against Weston and two other defendants, said Steven Wigrizer, Breeden's lawyer.
November 14, 2014 |
Update: The jury this afternoon awarded $45 million in compensatory and punitive damages to Tamara Breeden against Linda Ann Weston and two other defendants after deliberating for about an hour and 20 minutes. TESTIFYING yesterday for the first time in public, Tamara Breeden - one of four mentally disabled victims rescued from a Tacony sub-basement in 2011 - told a jury that alleged kidnapper Linda Ann Weston beat her, snatched away her babies, starved her and forced her to drink her urine for more than 10 years.
October 30, 2014
L OUIS RODRIGUEZ , 46, of Williamstown, N.J., is president of Rodriguez Consulting, in North Philadelphia. The Chester native founded the civil-engineering firm in 2007. It's the 54th-fastest-growing inner-city business on the 2014 Inner City 100 compiled by the Massachusetts-based Initiative for a Competitive Inner City. Q: How'd you come up with the idea for the biz? A: I was working for the Philadelphia Water Department and noticed a lot of work was outsourced to private firms.
October 9, 2014 |
Billy Blaise Dufala's usual destination for art supplies doesn't offer oil paints, archival paper, or sable brushes. But it does have new inventory daily - tons of it, brought in by the truckload from construction sites and 1-800-GOT-JUNK pickups. As he wanders, wearing a hard hat and reflective vest, among mountains of wood pallets, concrete rubble, and twisted metal at Revolution Recovery in Tacony, he's intrigued by a tattered but, it turns out, functional patio umbrella, a perfectly good roll of roofing vinyl, and a stuffed likeness of a New Kids on the Block-era Jordan Knight, still in its box. Uncovering potential within society's castoffs is at the core of the nonprofit Recycled Artist in Residency (RAIR)
June 26, 2014 |
WHAT IT LOST to New Jersey in 76ers practices, Philadelphia has gained in bologna. Deli giant Dietz & Watson has agreed to expand its national headquarters in Northeast Philly to replace a South Jersey food warehouse destroyed by a fire last fall. The 75-year-old, fourth-generation Philadelphia company will build a new distribution plant in Tacony, officials announced yesterday. Councilman Bobby Henon, Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Alan Greenberger and Philadelphia Industrial Development Corp.