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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Body Found In Canal Identified As Missing Lambertville Woman


Body Found In Canal Identified As Missing Lambertville Woman
 













LAMBERTVILLE, N.J. (CBS) – Authorities have confirmed that the body pulled from the Delaware & Raritan Canal Wednesday afternoon has been identified as 39-year-old Sarah Majoras.

The answers so far in the death of 39-year-old Sarah Majoras don’t make enough sense to her friend Joe Ujj.

“She doesn’t walk the canal – we all now she doesn’t walk the canal – no girl walks the canal at 2 in the morning,” says Ujj.

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

Negotiators talking to Ala. captor through pipe

Negotiators talking to Ala. captor through pipe

AP Photo
Law enforcement personnel load provisions into a bus during the third day of a hostage crisis involving a 5-year-old boy, in Midland City, Ala, Thursday, Jan 31, 2013. A standoff in rural Alabama went into a second full day Thursday as police surrounded an underground bunker where a retired truck driver was holding a 5-year-old hostage he grabbed off a school bus after shooting the driver dead. The bus driver, Charles Albert Poland Jr., 66, was hailed by locals as a hero who gave his life to protect the 21 students aboard the bus.

MIDLAND CITY, Ala. (AP) -- Speaking into a 4-inch-wide ventilation pipe, hostage negotiators tried Thursday to talk a man into releasing a kindergartener and ending a standoff in an underground bunker that stretched into its third day.

The man identified by multiple neighbors and witnesses as 65-year-old retired truck driver Jimmy Lee Dykes was accused of pulling the boy from a school bus on Tuesday and killing the driver. The pair was holed up in a small room on his property that authorities compared to tornado shelters common in the area.

James Arrington, police chief of the neighboring town of Pinckard, said the shelter was about 4 feet underground, with about 6-by-8 feet of floor space and a PVC pipe that negotiators were speaking through.
There were signs that the standoff could continue for some time: A state legislator said the shelter has electricity, food and TV. The police chief said the captor has been sleeping and told negotiators that he has spent long periods in the shelter before.

"He will have to give up sooner or later because (authorities) are not leaving," Arrington said. "It's pretty small, but he's been known to stay in there eight days."

Midland City Mayor Virgil Skipper said he has been briefed by law enforcement and visited with the boy's parents.

"He's crying for his parents," he said. "They are holding up good. They are praying and asking all of us to pray with them."

The normally quiet red clay road was teeming Thursday with more than a dozen police cars and trucks, a fire truck, a helicopter, officers from multiple agencies, media and at least one ambulance near Midland City, population 2,300.

Dykes was known around the neighborhood as a menacing figure who neighbors said once beat a dog to death with a lead pipe, threatened to shoot children for setting foot on his property and patrolled his yard at night with a flashlight and a firearm.

The chief confirmed that Dykes held anti-government views, as described by multiple neighbors: "He's against the government - starting with Obama on down."

"He doesn't like law enforcement or the government telling him what to do," he said. "He's just a loner."
Authorities say the gunman boarded a stopped school bus Tuesday afternoon and demanded two boys between 6 and 8 years old. When the driver tried to block his way, the gunman shot him several times and took a 5-year-old boy off the bus.

The bus driver, Charles Albert Poland Jr., 66, was hailed by locals as a hero who gave his life to protect the 21 students aboard the bus.

No motive has been discussed by investigators, but the police chief said the FBI had evidence suggesting it could be considered a hate crime. Federal authorities have not released any details about the standoff or the investigation. The mayor said he hasn't seen anything tying together Dykes' anti-government views and the allegations against him.

Dykes had been scheduled to appear in court Wednesday to answer charges he shot at his neighbors in a dispute last month over a speed bump. Neighbor Claudia Davis said he yelled and fired shots at her, her son and her baby grandson over damage Dykes claimed their pickup truck did to a makeshift speed bump in the dirt road. No one was hurt.

The son, James Davis Jr., believes Tuesday's shooting was connected to the court date. "I believe he thought I was going to be in court and he was going to get more charges than the menacing, which he deserved, and he had a bunch of stuff to hide and that's why he did it."

Neighbors described a number of other run-ins with Dykes in the time since he moved to this small town near the Georgia and Florida borders, in a region known for peanut farming.

A neighbor directly across the street, Brock Parrish, said Dykes usually wore overalls and glasses and his posture was hunched-over. He said Dykes usually drove a run-down "creeper" van with some of the windows covered in aluminum foil.

Parrish saw him often digging in his yard, as if he was preparing a spot to lay down a driveway or a building foundation. He lived in a small camping trailer on the site. He patrolled his lawn at night, walking from corner to corner with a flashlight and an assault rifle.

Mike and Patricia Smith, who also live across the street from Dykes and whose two children were on the bus, said their youngsters had a run-in with him about 10 months ago.

"My bulldogs got loose and went over there," Patricia Smith said. "The children went to get them. He threatened to shoot them if they came back."

Another neighbor, Ronda Wilbur, said Dykes beat her 120-pound dog with a lead pipe for coming onto his side of the dirt road. The dog died a week later.

"He said his only regret was he didn't beat him to death all the way," Wilbur said. "If a man can kill a dog, and beat it with a lead pipe and brag about it, it's nothing until it's going to be people."

Court records showed Dykes was arrested in Florida in 1995 for improper exhibition of a weapon, but the misdemeanor was dismissed. The circumstances of the arrest were not detailed in his criminal record. He was also arrested for marijuana possession in 2000.


Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Philadelphia Priest and Lay Teacher Convicted on Most Counts in Child Sex Abuse Trial

Philadelphia Priest and Lay Teacher Convicted on Most Counts in Child Sex Abuse Trial















PHILADELPHIA (CBS) –A Philadelphia jury today returned “guilty” verdicts on most counts against a former priest and a former lay teacher in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Father Charles Engelhardt and lay teacher Bernard Shero were charged with sexually molesting the same boy in 1999 and 2000.

Earlier this afternoon, the jury told the judge that it was deadlocked on one of the charges but had reached a decision on all the others.

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

Lewis says he's 'agitated,' not angry about story

Lewis says he's 'agitated,' not angry about story 

AP Photo
Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis speaks during an NFL Super Bowl XLVII football news conference on Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2013, in New Orleans. Lewis denied a report linking him to a company that purports to make performance-enhancers. The Ravens face the San Francisco 49ers in the Super Bowl on Sunday.
  
NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- Smiling, even laughing, at questions about a report linking him to a company that purports to make performance-enhancers, Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis said Wednesday he "never, ever took" the stuff.

Lewis described himself as "agitated," not angry, that the story has become part of the Super Bowl-week prelude to Baltimore's game against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday.

He added that he's certain his teammates won't be distracted by the report in Sports Illustrated. The magazine said Lewis sought help from a company that says its deer-antler spray and pills contain a banned product connected to human growth hormone. The 37-year-old Lewis is the leading tackler in the NFL postseason after returning from a torn right triceps that sidelined him for 10 games.

In a private conversation with Ravens head coach John Harbaugh, and later in the public setting of a news conference, Lewis distanced himself from Sports With Alternatives To Steroids (SWATS). SI reported that company owner Mitch Ross recorded a call with Lewis hours after the player hurt his arm in an October game against Dallas. According to the report, Lewis asked Ross to send him deer-antler spray and pills, along with other items made by the company.

"It's so funny of a story because I never, ever took what he says or whatever I was supposed to do. And it's just sad once again that someone can have this much attention on a stage this big, where the dreams are really real," Lewis said Wednesday, wearing his white No. 52 Ravens jersey, gray sweat pants and a black hat with the team's purple logo. "I don't need it. My teammates don't need it. The 49ers don't need it. Nobody needs it."

The magazine reported that when it spoke to Lewis for its story, he acknowledged asking Ross for "some more of the regular stuff" on the night of the injury and that he has been associated with the company "for a couple years."

Lewis' stance Wednesday was different.

"He told me there's nothing to it. ... He's told us in the past, he's told us now, that he's never taken any of that stuff, ever. And I believe Ray. I trust Ray completely. We have a relationship. I know this man. And I know what he's all about," Harbaugh said. "It's just too bad it has to be something that gets so much play."

Christopher Key, a co-owner of SWATS, said in a telephone interview that the company removed from its website NFL players' endorsements because "all the players were given letters by the NFL two years ago saying they had to cease and desist and could not continue to do business with us anymore."

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello confirmed that, but did not respond to other requests for comment about the company or Lewis' involvement.

Key said the deer-antler products made by SWATS "helped the body repair, regrow and rejuvenate" and that "you will never fail a drug test from taking our product."

He added that SWATS has sold its products to more than 20 college football players each at Southeastern Conference schools Alabama, Auburn, Mississippi, LSU and Georgia.

Alabama has sent two cease and desist letters to the company, university spokeswoman Debbie Lane said, adding: "UA has been aware of this situation for some time, and we have monitored this company for several years."

Auburn spokesman Kirk Sampson said that school sent a cease-and-desist letter in 2011.

In an emailed statement, Ross said: "It is the view of SWATS and Mitch Ross that the timing of information was unfortunate and misleading and was in no way intended to harm any athlete. We have always been about aiding athletes to heal faster and participate at an optimum level of play in a lawful and healthy manner. We never encourage the use of harmful supplements and/or dangerous drugs."

Harbaugh didn't think his players would be bothered a bit by the subject this week, dismissively waving his left hand while saying: "As a football team, it's not even a factor for us."

Known for his frequent references to God and faith, 2001 Super Bowl MVP Lewis called the whole episode a "joke" and a "trick of the devil," adding that he told teammates: "Don't let people from the outside ever come and try to disturb what's inside."

Faced with a handful of questions about SWATS, and on-field topics, Lewis never had to deal with a single reference to a dark chapter in his life: He pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice in connection with a double murder after a Super Bowl party at an Atlanta nightclub in 2000.

"We all in here have a past. You know? But how many people actually dwell into it? You know? Nah, it ain't about your past. It's about your future," Lewis said in response to a question about the Ravens keeping focused on Sunday's game.

"And for me and my teammates, I promise you, we have a strong group of men that we don't bend too much," he said, raising a clenched right fist, "and we keep pushing forward. So it's not a distraction at all for us."

Asked about deer-antler spray, San Francisco's tight end Vernon Davis' take was, "I don't think Ray would take any substance."

Carlos Rogers, a 49ers cornerback, chuckled when asked about it and what effect the headlines could have on the Ravens.

"I don't think they'll get a distraction. I don't know what to make of that. I heard it was something that can't be detected. They can't test (for) it, anyway," Rogers said. "Him saying that he's never failed a test, he probably hasn't failed a test for what they test for."

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Delaware County Middle School Student Arrested For Alleged Facebook Threat

Delaware County Middle School Student Arrested For Alleged Facebook Threat

RIDLEY, Pa. (CBS) — A middle school student from Delaware County was taken into custody for alleged
threats on Facebook.

The Delaware County District Attorney’s Office confirms the student, a 12-year-old boy, allegedly posted comments on the social networking site threatening to bring a weapon to school today (Tuesday) and gun down fellow students.

“He started saying he was going to shoot me and my friends,” said 12-year-old Evan Bosak, of Ridley Middle School.

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

New Surveillance Video Of Woman Who Kidnapped 5-Year-Old Released

New Surveillance Video Of Woman Who Kidnapped 5-Year-Old Released














PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Philadelphia police have released a new piece of video showing the alleged kidnapper of a 5-year-old girl from a West Philadelphia elementary school.

Police say the video, taken by a camera at an area business, captures the area of 61st and Larchwood, just blocks from the school and shows the alleged female kidnapper passing by on her way to the school and then passing the camera again with the girl in tow.

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

Monday, January 28, 2013

Police Searching For Teenage ‘Person Of Interest’ In Abduction Of Kindergartner From Philly School


Police Searching For Teenage ‘Person Of Interest’ In Abduction Of Kindergartner From Philly School















PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Police now say they are looking for another “person of interest” in the abduction of a five-year-old girl from at Bryant Elementary School.

Detectives and the victim met last weekend. Capt. John Darby of the Special Victims Unit says the girl escorted detectives through a West Philadelphia neighborhood and took them to the 6200 block of Larchwood Street.

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

Second Arrest Made In West Philadelphia Tire Slashings

Second Arrest Made In West Philadelphia Tire Slashings

(credit: Philadelphia Police Department)

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Police have made a second arrest in connection with a series of tire slashings in West Philadelphia earlier this month.

The Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office has charged 36-year-old Aleze Lewis with criminal mischief for her involvement in the slashing of tires on 59 vehicles along Hazel and Chancellor Avenues in the early morning hours of January 7th.

Lewis was questioned by police just days after the tire slashings occurred when she stopped by Southwest Detectives and told investigators that she had information about the person responsible.

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/


Sunday, January 27, 2013

Longtime Local Media Personality Sally Starr Dies At 90


Longtime Local Media Personality Sally Starr Dies At 90

(Sally Starr Credit: www.broadcastpioneers.com) 
 PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – One of Philadelphia’s iconic TV show hosts is gone. Sally Starr passed away Sunday. She turned 90 on Saturday.

“Our Gal Sal” started out in country music, but most of us knew Sally Starr for her daily “Popeye Theatre” which aired for a quarter century on Channel 6, ending in 1971.

Her reputation kept her going for decades after that, mostly through public appearances. Sally had her share of private tragedies, but never allowed them to affect her public personae. She spoke about that to KYW Newsradio last year:

For full story go to: http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/



Karnow, Vietnam reporter-historian, dies at age 87

Karnow, Vietnam reporter-historian, dies at age 87 

AP Photo
FILE - In this Thursday, Aug. 20, 2009 file photo, author and journalist Stanley Karnow poses for a photo in his home in Potomac, Md. Karnow, the award-winning author and journalist who worked on a definitive book and television documentary about the Vietnam War and later a won Pulitzer for a history of the Philippines, died Sunday, Jan. 27, 2013. He was 87.
 

Stanley Karnow, the award-winning author and journalist who wrote a definitive book about the Vietnam War, worked on an accompanying documentary and later won a Pulitzer for a history of the Philippines, died Sunday morning. He was 87.

Karnow, who had congestive heart failure, died in his sleep at his home in Potomac, Md., said son Michael Karnow.

A Paris-based correspondent for Time magazine early in his career, Karnow was assigned in 1958 to Hong Kong as bureau chief for Southeast Asia and soon arrived in Vietnam, when the American presence was still confined to a small core of advisers. In 1959, Karnow reported on the first two American deaths in Vietnam, not suspecting that tens of thousands would follow.

Into the 1970s, Karnow would cover the war off and on for Time, The Washington Post and other publications and then draw upon his experience for an epic PBS documentary and for the million-selling "Vietnam: A History," published in 1983 and widely regarded as an essential, even-handed summation.

Karnow's "In Our Image," a companion to a PBS documentary on the Philippines, won the Pulitzer in 1990. His other books included "Mao and China," which in 1973 received a National Book Award nomination, and "Paris in The Fifties," a memoir published in 1997.

A fellow Vietnam reporter, Morley Safer, would describe Karnow as the embodiment of "the wise old Asian hand." Karnow was known for his precision and research - his Vietnam book reaches back to ancient times - and his willingness to see past his own beliefs. He was a critic of the Vietnam War (and a name on President Nixon's enemies list) who still found cruelty and incompetence among the North Vietnamese. His friendship with Philippines leader Corazon Aquino did not stop him from criticizing her presidency.

A salesman's son, Karnow was born in New York in 1925 and by high school was writing radio plays and editing the school's paper, a job he also held at the Harvard Crimson. He first lived in Asia during World War II when he served throughout the region in the Army Air Corps. Back in the U.S., he majored in European history and literature at Harvard, from which he graduated in 1947.

Enchanted by French culture, and by the romance of Paris set down by Americans Ernest Hemingway and Henry Miller, Karnow set out for Europe after leaving school not for any particular purpose, but simply because it was there. "I went to Paris, planning to stay for the summer. I stayed for 10 years," he wrote in "Paris in the Fifties."

He began sending dispatches to a Connecticut weekly, where the owner was a friend, and in 1950 was hired as a researcher at Time. Promoted to correspondent, he would cover strikes, race car driving and the beginning of the French conflict with Algeria, but also interviewed Audrey Hepburn ("a memorable if regrettably brief encounter") fashion designer Christian Dior and director John Huston, who smoked cigars, knocked back Irish whiskies and rambled about the meaning of Humphrey Bogart. Friends and acquaintances included Norman Mailer, James Baldwin and John Kenneth Galbraith.

Bernard Kalb, a journalist, former State Department spokesman and longtime friend who met Karnow when they were both working in Hong Kong in the 1950s, said Karnow described journalism as the only profession "in which you can be an adolescent all your life."

"You never lose your enthusiasm and the depths of curiosity to engage with the world. That's what it means," Kalb told The Associated Press on Sunday. "Stanley took those particular drives of adolescence all through his life."

Karnow's first book was the text for "Southeast Asia," an illustrated Life World Library release published in 1962, before the U.S. committed ground troops to Vietnam. It was partly a Cold War time capsule, preoccupied with Communist influence, but was also skeptical enough of official policy to anticipate the fall of a key American ally, South Vietnamese president Ngo Dihn Diem, an event that helped lead to greater American involvement.

Like so many others, Karnow initially supported the war and believed in the "domino theory," which asserted that if South Vietnam were to fall to communism its neighbors would too.

But by war's end, Karnow agreed with the soldier asked by a reporter in 1968 what he thought of the conflict: "It stinks," was the reply.

"Vietnam: A History" was published in 1983 and coincided with a 13-part PBS documentary series. Like much of his work, Karnow's book combined historical research, firsthand observations and thorough reporting, including interviews with top officials on both sides of the war. Decades later, it remained read and taught alongside such classics as David Halberstam's "The Best and the Brightest" and Michael Herr's "Dispatches."

"There are not many carefully delineated judgments in the book. But that is more a comment than the criticism it might be, for Mr. Karnow does not claim to have reached a sweeping verdict on the war," Douglas Pike, a former U.S. government official in Vietnam who became a leading authority on the war, wrote for The New York Times in a 1983 review.

"Because he has a sharp eye for the illustrative moment and a keen ear for the telling quote, his book is first-rate as a popular contribution to understanding the war. And that is what he meant it to be."

The PBS series won six Emmys, a Peabody and a Polk and was the highest-rated documentary at the time for public television, with an average of 9.7 million viewers per episode. Along with much praise came criticism from the left and right. The liberal weekly The Nation faulted Karnow for "little analysis and much waffling." Conservatives were so angered by the documentary that PBS agreed to let the right-wing Accuracy in Media air a rebuttal, "Television's Vietnam: The Real Story," which in turn was criticized as a show of weakness by PBS.

Karnow completed no books after "Paris in the Fifties." He attempted a study of Asians in the U.S., which he abandoned; a history of Jewish humor that never advanced beyond an outline; and a second memoir, with such working titles as "Interesting Times" and "Out of Asia." He also cared for his ailing wife, Annette, who died of cancer in 2009. A previous marriage, to Claude Sarraute (daughter of French novelist Nathalie Sarraute), ended in divorce in 1955. Karnow had three children.

He was often called on for speeches, panel discussions and television appearances and asked for his opinions on current affairs. One query came in 2009, through his old friend Richard Holbrooke, at the time the U.S. special envoy to Afghanistan. Holbrooke wanted advice on U.S. policy in Afghanistan and put Karnow on the phone with Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. commander. Karnow and the general discussed similarities between the wars in Afghanistan and Vietnam.

"What did we learn from Vietnam?" Karnow later told the AP. "We learned that we shouldn't have been there in the first place."

Holocaust items put on display for remembrance day

Holocaust items put on display for remembrance day 

AP Photo
Holocaust survivor Stella Knobel's teddy bear on display at the memorial's "Gathering the Fragments" exhibit at Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial and museum in Jerusalem, Sunday, Jan. 27, 2013., Sunday, Jan. 27, 2013. When Stella Knobel's family had to flee World War II Poland in 1939, the only thing the 7-year-old girl could take with her was her teddy bear. For the next six years, the stuffed animal never left her side as the family wondered through the Soviet Union, to Iran and finally the Holy Land. "He was like family. He was all I had. He knew all my secrets," the 80-year-old now says with a smile. "I saved him all these years. But I worried what would happen to him when I died." So when she heard about a project launched by Israel's national Holocaust memorial and museum to collect artifacts from aging survivors - before they, and their stories, were lost forever - she reluctantly handed over her beloved bear Misiu - Polish for “Teddy Bear”- so the fading memories of the era could be preserved for others.


JERUSALEM (AP) -- When Stella Knobel's family fled World War II Poland in 1939, the only thing the 7-year-old girl could take with her was her teddy bear. For the next six years, the stuffed animal never left her side as the family wandered through the Soviet Union, to Iran and finally the Holy Land.

"He was like family. He was all I had. He knew all my secrets," the 80-year-old said with a smile. "I saved him all these years. But I worried what would happen to him when I died."

So when she heard about a project launched by Yad Vashem, Israel's national Holocaust memorial and museum, to collect artifacts from aging survivors, she reluctantly handed over her beloved bear Misiu, Polish for "teddy bear," so the memories of the era could be preserved.

"We've been through a lot together, so it was hard to let him go," said Knobel, who was widowed 12 years ago and has no children. "But here he has found a haven."

The German Nazis and their collaborators murdered 6 million Jews during World War II. In addition to rounding up Jews and shipping them to death camps, the Nazis also confiscated their possessions and stole their valuables, leaving little behind. Those who survived often had just a small item or two they managed to keep. Many have clung to the sentimental objects ever since.

On Sunday, Knobel's tattered teddy bear was on display at Yad Vashem, one of more than 71,000 items collected nationwide over the past two years. With a missing eye, his stuffing bursting out and a red ribbon around his neck, Misiu was seated behind a glass window as part of the memorial's "Gathering the Fragments" exhibit.

The opening came as other Holocaust-related events took place around the world.

In 2005, the United Nations designated Jan. 27 as International Holocaust Remembrance Day, marking 60 years to the liberation of the Auschwitz death camp.

Israel's main Holocaust memorial day is in the spring, marking the anniversary of the uprising of the Jewish ghetto in Warsaw, Poland, against the Nazis.

To coincide with the international commemorations, Israel released its annual anti-Semitism report, noting that the past year experienced an increase in the number of attacks against Jewish targets worldwide, mainly by elements identified with Islamic extremists.

At Sunday's weekly Cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the lessons of the Holocaust have yet to be learned. He accused Iran of pursuing nuclear weapons with the goal of destroying Israel.

"What has not changed is the desire to annihilate the Jews. What has changed is the ability of the Jews to defend themselves," he said.

Yad Vashem showcased dozens of items, each representing tales of perseverance and survival. They included sweaters, paintings, diaries, letters, dolls, cameras and religious artifacts that were stashed away for decades or discarded before they were collected and restored.

Yad Vashem researchers have been interviewing survivors, logging their stories, tagging materials and scanning documents into the museum's digitized archive.

Aside from their value as exhibits in the museum, Yad Vashem says the items are also proving helpful for research, filling in holes in history and contributing to the museum's huge database of names.

"Thousands of Israelis have decided to part from personal items close to their hearts, and through them share the memory of their dear ones who were murdered in the Holocaust," said Yad Vashem Chairman Avner Shalev. "Through these examples, we have tried to bring to light items whose stories both explain the individual story and provide testimony to join the array of personal accounts that make up the narrative of the Holocaust."

For 83-year-old Shlomo Resnik, one such item was the steel bowl he and his father used for food at the Dachau concentration camp. His father Meir's name and number are engraved on the bowl, a reminder of how hard they had to scrap for food. "We fought to stay alive," he said.

Approaching the glass-encased display, Tsilla Shlubsky began tearing. Below she could see the handwritten diary her father kept while the family took shelter with two dozen others in a small attic in the Polish countryside. With a pencil, Jakov Glazmann meticulously recorded the family's ordeal in tiny Yiddish letters. His daughter doesn't know exactly what is written and she doesn't care to find out.

"I remember him writing. I lived through it," said Shlubsky, 74. "Abba (Dad) wasn't a writer, but with his heart's blood he wrote a diary to record the events to leave something behind so that what had taken place would be known."

She said it pained her to part with the family treasure.

"I know this is the right place for it and it will be protected forever," she said. "Now is the time and this is the place."


Saturday, January 26, 2013

Man Arrested After Allegedly Threatening To Blow Up Liberty Bell

Man Arrested After Allegedly Threatening To Blow Up Liberty Bell

(File photo)

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Philadelphia police say a man in custody after allegedly threatening to blow up the Liberty Bell Saturday morning.

Authorities say shortly before 11 a.m. the man claimed that he would destroy the icon and that he had explosives in his two backpacks. The man was apprehended.

The backpacks were being held along Market Street near 7th Street when the bomb squad arrived. Market Street was shut down to vehicles and pedestrians between 7th and 8th Streets while an investigation was going on, but everything is now back to normal. The Liberty Bell Pavilion, located about a block away, never closed.

For full story go to: http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

Trying to unlock secrets of dead serial killer

Trying to unlock secrets of dead serial killer 

AP Photo
FILE - This undated file photo provided by the FBI shows Israel Keyes. Israel Keyes showed no remorse as he detailed how he'd abducted and killed an 18-year-old woman, then demanded ransom, pretending she was alive. Keyes showed no remorse as he detailed how he'd abducted and the killed 18-year-old barista Samantha Koenig, then demanded ransom, pretending she was alive. His confession cracked the case, but prosecutors questioning him soon realized there was more, he has killed before. Before divulging more details, Keyes committed suicide in his cell.


ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) -- The suspect, hands and feet shackled, fidgeted in his chair, chuckling at times as he confessed to a brutal killing.

Israel Keyes showed no remorse as he described in merciless detail how he'd abducted and strangled an 18-year-old woman, then demanded ransom, pretending she was alive. As the two prosecutors questioned him, they were struck by his demeanor: He seemed pumped up, as if he were reliving the crime. His body shook, they said, and he rubbed his muscular arms on the chair rests so vigorously his handcuffs scraped off the wood finish.

The prosecutors had acceded to Keyes' requests: a cup of Americano coffee, a peanut butter Snickers and a cigar (for later). Then they showed him surveillance photos, looked him in the eye and declared: We know you kidnapped Samantha Koenig. We're going to convict you.

They aimed to solve a disappearance, and they did. But they soon realized there was much more here: a kind of evil they'd never anticipated.

Confessing to Koenig's killing, Keyes used a Google map to point to a spot on a lake where he'd disposed of her dismembered body and gone ice fishing at the same time. He wasn't done talking, though. He declared he'd been "two different people" for 14 years. He had stories to tell, stories he said he'd never shared. He made seemingly plural references and chilling remarks such as, "It takes a long time to strangle someone."

As prosecutors Kevin Feldis and Frank Russo and investigators from the FBI and Anchorage police listened that day in early 2012, they came to a consensus:

Israel Keyes wasn't talking just about Samantha Koenig. He'd killed before.

In 40 hours of interviews over eight months, Keyes talked of many killings; authorities believe there were nearly a dozen. He traveled from Vermont to Alaska hunting for victims. He said he buried "murder kits" around the country so they would be readily accessible. These caches - containing guns, zip ties and other supplies used to dispose of bodies - were found in Alaska and New York.

At the same time, incredibly, Keyes was an under-the-radar everyday citizen - a father, a live-in boyfriend, a respected handyman who had no trouble finding jobs in the community.

Keyes claimed he killed four people in Washington state, dumped another body in New York and raped a teen in Oregon. He said he robbed banks to help finance his crimes; authorities corroborated two robberies in New York and Texas. He confessed to burning down a house in Texas, contentedly watching the flames from a distance.

Though sometimes specific, he was often frustratingly vague. Only once - other than Koenig - did he identify by name his victims: a married couple in Vermont.

Israel Keyes wanted to be in control. Of his crimes. Of how much he revealed. And, ultimately, of his fate.

In December, he slashed his left wrist and strangled himself with a sheet in his jail cell. He left two pages of bloodstained writings. And many questions.

Investigators are now left searching for answers, but they face a daunting task: They're convinced the 34-year-old Keyes was a serial killer; they've verified many details he provided. But they have a puzzle that spans the U.S. and dips into Mexico and Canada - and the one person who held the missing pieces is dead. FBI agents on opposite ends of the country, joined by others, are working the case, hoping a timeline will offer clues to his grisly odyssey.

But they know, too, that Israel Keyes' secrets are buried with him - and may never be unearthed.
---
Authorities aren't certain when Keyes' crime spree began or ended. But they have a haunting image of his last known victim.

Snippets of a surveillance video show the first terrifying moments of Koenig's abduction. Keyes is seen as a shadowy figure in ski mask and hood outside Common Grounds, a tiny Anchorage coffee shack then partially concealed from a busy six-lane highway by mountains of snow.

It's Feb. 1, 2012, about 8 p.m., closing time. Koenig is shown handing Keyes a cup of coffee, then backing away with her hands up, as if it's a robbery. The lights go out and Keyes next appears as a fuzzy image climbing through the drive-thru window.

Authorities outlined his next steps:
Keyes forced Koenig to his Silverado; he'd already bound her hands with zip ties and gagged her. He hid her in a shed outside his house, turned on loud music so no one could hear if she screamed, then returned to the coffee shack to retrieve scraps of the restraints and get her phone.

On Feb. 2, Keyes raped and strangled Koenig. He left her in that shed, flew to Houston and embarked on a cruise, returning about two weeks later.

He then took a photo of Koenig's body holding a Feb. 13 newspaper to make it appear she was alive. Keyes wrote a ransom note on the back, demanding $30,000 be placed in her account. He texted a message, directing the family to a dog park where the note could be found. Her family deposited some money from a reward fund.

On Feb. 29, Keyes withdrew $500 in ransom money from an Anchorage ATM, using a debit card stolen from Koenig's boyfriend (the two shared an account). The next day, $500 more was retrieved from another ATM.

Then on March 7, far away in Willcox, Ariz., Keyes withdrew $400. He traveled to Lordsburg, N.M., and took out $80. Two days later, a withdrawal of $480 in Humble, Texas. On March 11, the same amount from an ATM in Shepherd, Texas.

By then, authorities had a blurry ATM photo and a pattern: Keyes was driving along route I-10 in a rented white Ford Focus. On March 13, nearly 3,200 miles from Anchorage, police in Lufkin, Texas, pounced when they spotted Keyes driving 3 mph above the speed limit.

Inside his car was an incriminating stash: Rolls of cash in rubber bands. A piece of a gray T-shirt cut out to make a face mask. A highlighted map with routes through California, Arizona and New Mexico. The stolen debit card. And Samantha Koenig's phone.

Monique Doll, the lead Anchorage police investigator in the Koenig case, and her partner, Jeff Bell, rushed to Texas for a crack at Keyes.

Doll showed Keyes the ransom note.

"I told him that the first couple of times that I read the ransom I thought that whoever wrote the note was a monster and the more I read it -it must have been 100 times - the more I came to understand that monsters aren't born but are created and that this person had a story to tell."

Keyes' response, she says, was firm: "I can't help you."

Two weeks later in custody back in Alaska, he changed his mind.
He told another investigator, Doll says, to relay a message: "Tell her she's got her monster."
---

To Monique Doll, Keyes was a Dr. Jekyll-Mr. Hyde personality, but she saw only the diabolical side.

"We knew him as a serial killer," she says. "That's how he spoke to us. We didn't know ... the father, the hard-working business owner."

Keyes warned investigators that others might mischaracterize him.

"There is no one who knows me - or who has ever known me - who knows anything about me really. ... They're going to tell you something that does not line up with anything I tell you because I'm two different people basically...," he says in one snippet released by the FBI.

"How long have you been two different people?" asks Russo, one of the prosecutors.
Keyes laughs. "(A) long time. Fourteen years."

Authorities suspect Keyes started killing more than 10 years ago after completing a three-year stint in the Army at what is now Joint Base Lewis-McChord near Tacoma, Wash.

Sean McGuire, who shared a barracks with Keyes, says they developed a camaraderie while spending some time together during grueling training in Egypt. But he says he was disturbed by a dark side that sometimes surfaced. When Keyes was offended by his buddy's comments, he'd drop his head, McGuire recalls, knit his brow, lower his voice and say, "`I want to kill you, McGuire.'"

Keyes, the second eldest in a large family, was homeschooled in a cabin without electricity near Colville, Wash., in a mountainous, sparsely populated area. The family moved in the 1990s to Smyrna, Maine, where they were involved in the maple syrup business, according to a neighbor who remembered Keyes as a nice, courteous young man.

After leaving the Army, Keyes worked for the Makah Indian tribe in Washington, then moved to Anchorage in 2007 after his girlfriend found work here. A self-employed carpenter and handyman, he was considered competent, honest and efficient.

"I never got any bad, weird, scary, odd vibe from him in any way, shape or form," says Paul Adelman, an Anchorage attorney who first hired Keyes as a handyman in 2008.

Keyes' live-in girlfriend also was floored to learn of his double life, according to David Kanters, her friend. "He had everyone fooled," Kanters told The Associated Press in an email. "THAT is the scary part. He came across as a nice normal guy." (She did not respond to numerous requests for comment.)

Keyes blended in easily. "He was not only very intelligent," Doll says. "He was very adaptable and he had a lot of self-control. Those three things combined made him extraordinarily difficult to catch."

Keyes also was meticulous and methodical, flying to airports in the Lower 48, renting cars, driving hundreds of miles searching for victims, prowling remote spots such as parks, campgrounds and cemeteries. The Koenig case was an exception; it was in his community.

In one recorded interview, Keyes discussed his methods:
"Back when I was smart, I would let them come to me," he said, adding that he would go to isolated areas far from home. "There's not much to choose from ... but there's also no witnesses."

Keyes was proud he'd gone undetected so long. When asked for a motive, Anchorage police officer Bell recalls, Keyes said, "'A lot of people ask why and I would be like: Why not?'"

"He liked what he was doing," says FBI Special Agent Jolene Goeden. "He talked about getting a rush out of it, the adrenaline, the excitement."

Goeden says Keyes provided information for eight victims, some more specific than others. He also alluded to other victims, and said he killed fewer than 12 people altogether. In one case, he claimed a body was recovered and the death ruled accidental; he wouldn't say more.

Investigators say they independently verified almost everything he told them. "It would have been impossible to make some of these details up," prosecutor Feldis says.

They tried to get Keyes to identify more victims. But he balked at even providing their gender.

There was an exception.

Shortly after Keyes confessed to Koenig's murder, the prosecutors told him they knew he'd killed others and said his computers were being searched. Keyes knew he'd stored information in them about two victims.

It was time to clear up a mystery in a small town 3,000 miles away.
---
It was about 8 p.m. on April 6, 2012, and police Lt. George Murtie was home in Essex, Vt., when a local FBI agent called.

Nearly 10 months had passed since Bill and Lorraine Currier, a couple in their 50s, had disappeared. They were presumed dead. Leads were still trickling in, but Murtie was surprised to hear authorities in Alaska had a man in custody who'd confessed to killing the couple and disposing of their bodies in an abandoned farmhouse.

An Essex officer for 28 years, Murtie knew every inch of his community, including the location of that farmhouse. He headed out there that night with another detective, only to discover it had been demolished. 
They checked some nearby buildings but found nothing.

Several weeks later, when Murtie questioned Keyes by phone, he found him matter-of-fact when discussing how he'd killed the Curriers.

"I would describe it as if I was talking to a contractor about the work I was going to have done and he was describing the work he had done in the past," Murtie recalls. "There was no emotion or anything. Just flat."
Keyes confirmed details of a nightmarish sequence of events later outlined by Vermont authorities:
On June 2, 2011, Keyes flew into Chicago, intending to kidnap and kill. He carried a gun and silencer. He drove more than 750 miles to Essex, a bedroom community just outside Burlington. He checked into a motel he'd stayed at in 2009 - he buried weapons and supplies in the area at that time - and began scouting a house that suited his purposes: No children or dogs. No car in the driveway. A place he could be reasonably sure of where the bedroom was located.

In the early moments of June 9, Keyes cut the phone lines and removed a window fan to enter the garage. Grabbing a crowbar, he smashed a window into the house and, wearing a headlamp to navigate the darkness, rushed into the Curriers' bedroom. He forced them into their Saturn and bound them with zip ties.

They drove a few miles to the farmhouse where Keyes tied Bill Currier to a stool. Going back to the car, he saw Lorraine Currier had broken her restraints and was running toward the road: Keyes chased and tackled her, forcing her back to the building.

Bill Currier had somehow broken the stool and was shouting, "Where's my wife?" Keyes hit him with a shovel, then shot him. He sexually assaulted and strangled Lorraine Currier and put both bodies in garbage bags. He then drove into New York state, and dumped the Curriers' stolen gun and parts of the weapon he'd used into a reservoir in Parishville, N.Y. FBI dive teams recovered both. Authorities were unable to find the Curriers' bodies.

Murtie was struck by Keyes' confidence.

"There was an enormous risk he had to take to go into a neighborhood he's unfamiliar with, into a house of people he's unfamiliar with and remove them in their own vehicle," he says. "A rational-thinking person would think the chances of getting caught are very high."

During the interviews, Keyes sometimes clammed up and threatened to stop talking if publicly identified as a suspect in the Curriers' murders. Vermont authorities held off as Alaska investigators pressed for more information.

"Why don't you give us another name?" asked Russo, a federal prosecutor.

Keyes was conflicted - he wanted his story out there, but worried about the impact it would have on friends and family (he has a daughter believed to be 10 or 11), says Goeden, the FBI agent. He rebuffed all appeals to bring peace to others.

"Think about your loved ones," Doll urged. "Wouldn't you want to know if they're never coming home?"
He mulled it over and returned another day with his answer.

"I'd rather think my loved one was on a beach somewhere,' he said, "other than being horribly murdered."
--
Israel Keyes never provided another name.

He was found dead Dec. 2, three months before his scheduled trial in the Koenig case. The FBI is analyzing his two bloodstained pages, with writing on both sides, but they apparently don't contain victims' names.

His suicide leaves investigators and Koenig's family disappointed, angry and frustrated.

"We deserved our day in court and we didn't get it," says James Koenig, Samantha's father.

Months before Keyes' past was disclosed, Koenig believed his daughter was not his only victim. He and volunteers set up a Facebook page called, "Have You Ever met Israel Keyes? Possible Serial Killer." It includes photos of Keyes and maps.

Meanwhile, investigators have used Keyes' financial and travel records to piece together a timeline of his whereabouts from Oct. 4, 2004, to March 13, 2012. He traveled throughout the United States and made short trips into Canada and Mexico.

The FBI is seeking the public's help. On Jan. 16, a Dallas bureau press release stated Keyes was "believed to have committed multiple kidnappings and murders" across the country starting in 2001. It's looking for anyone who had contact with him on Feb. 12-16, 2012, when he was believed to be in various Texas cities.
More appeals are expected in other places.

FBI agents in Seattle and in Albany, N.Y., also are working with state and local authorities to try to verify tips from people who reported seeing Keyes. Unsolved homicides are being checked, too, to determine if Keyes was in the area at the time.

But definitive evidence? That'll be hard to come by.

Feldis, the prosecutor who heard Keyes' first confession, says it's likely the true scope of his crimes will never be known.

"There's a lot more out there that only Israel Keyes knows," he says, "and he took that to his grave."





Friday, January 25, 2013

American women have served and died from the first

American women have served and died from the first 

AP Photo
FILE - This Sept. 22, 1942 black-and-white file photo shows Aviatrix Nancy Harkness Love, director of the Women's Auxiliary Ferry Squadron (WAFS), and Col. Robert H. Baker, commanding officer, inspect the first contingent of women pilots in the WAFS at the New Castle Army Air Base, Del. Women served and died on the nation’s battlefields from the first. They were nurses and cooks, spies and couriers in the Revolutionary War. Some disguised themselves as men to fight for the Union or the Confederacy. Yet the U.S. military’s official acceptance of women in combat took more than two centuries. New roles for females were doled out fitfully _ whenever commanders got in a bind and realized they needed women’s help. A look at milestones on the way to lifting the ban on women in ground combat.
  
WASHINGTON (AP) -- American women have served and died on the nation's battlefields from the first. They were nurses and cooks, spies and couriers in the Revolutionary War. Some disguised themselves as men to fight for the Union or the Confederacy. Yet the U.S. military's official acceptance of women in combat took more than two centuries.

New roles for females have been doled out fitfully, whenever commanders have gotten in binds and realized 
they needed women's help.

"The main driver is that it's been militarily necessary," says retired Capt. Lory Manning, a 25-year Navy veteran who leads military studies for the Women's Research & Education Institute. She points, for example, to creation of the Army Nurse Corps in response to the struggle against disease in the Spanish-American War.

Some milestones on the way to this week's lifting of the ban on women in ground combat jobs:
---
FROM THE FIRST

They didn't wear uniforms, but the Army hired women as nurses, cooks and laundresses during the American Revolution. Women were also spies and saboteurs. They carried George Washington's messages across enemy lines to his generals.

Many "camp followers" went to war with their soldier husbands, sometimes bringing children along. Some stepped into the places of fallen men in battle. Other women disguised themselves as young men to join the fighting.

A few hundred women secretly served as Civil War soldiers, historians estimate. There are records of some who were discovered only after they were wounded or killed.

For her service as a Civil War surgeon, Dr. Mary E. Walker was awarded her era's Medal of Honor. Harriet Tubman led a group of former slaves who spied on Confederate troops in the South and helped the Union Army free more slaves. A Virginia woman, Elizabeth Van Lew, ran one of the war's most sophisticated spy rings for the Union. Clara Barton's experiences tending battlefield wounded led her to found the American Red Cross.
---
NURSES NEEDED

Despite their record as volunteers and contract workers, women were denied a place within military service until 1901, when the Army Nurse Corps was created. Navy nurses followed in 1908.

What prompted the creation of the Nurse Corps? The devastating toll of typhoid, malaria and other diseases that killed far more soldiers than the fighting during the Spanish-American War.

Overwhelmed by the tropical diseases, the military rushed to find more than 1,500 female contract nurses to serve at military hospitals and aboard ships. Twenty-one nurses died in the line of duty. After the war, the Army's surgeon general called for creation of a permanent nurse corps with reserves at the ready for future wars.
---
OVER THERE

The world wars brought large-scale proof that women could handle many of the military's noncombat jobs. They were recruited to "Free a man to fight!"

For the first time in World War I, women other than nurses were allowed to enlist in the Navy and Marines. 

They worked as telephone operators, accountants, draftsmen, clerks. Some went to Europe. Still, only about 35,000 women, the majority of them nurses, served among nearly 5 million U.S. men. They were promptly sent home after the armistice.

They were the advance troops for the wave of women to come in the next world war, including the Navy's WAVES and the Army's WACS. There were even civilian pilots - the WASPS - who repositioned planes and towed gunners' targets but were denied Air Force status.

The demands of a huge military buildup and a diminishing pool of male draftees crumpled resistance to enlisting large numbers of women for World War II.

More than 400,000 women served, at home and overseas, stepping into nearly all types of noncombat jobs. 

Retired Air Force Brig. Gen. Wilma L. Vaught, a teenager then, remembers women's eagerness to help.

"America was attacked," said Vaught, president of the Women in Military Service for America Memorial Foundation. "Women felt, `This is my country, I've got to help defend my country.' They wanted to be part of it."

World War II was the turning point that earned women full-fledged military status. In 1948, after fierce debate, Congress approved allowing women to serve in the regular forces of all branches of the service all the time, not just in war.
---
WELCOME BACK

In peacetime, the Pentagon retreated back to assigning females to "women's work." They got few chances at promotion and couldn't be admirals or generals. Although military nurses risked their lives in Korea and Vietnam, the military insisted women weren't fit for combat conditions.

The equal rights movement prompted some changes - in 1967, Congress got rid of a law limiting women to 2 percent of the military and opened up promotions to higher service grades.

But the armed services didn't welcome women back in a big way until the nation cut off its guaranteed supply of men.

In 1973, the draft ended and the all-volunteer military was born. Short on male volunteers, the Defense Department began seriously recruiting women and assigning them a wider range of jobs. In 1975, the service academies were opened to women.

Women grew to more than 10 percent of America's force by the 1980s.
---
FRONT LINES BLUR

More than 40,000 women deployed for the Persian Gulf War in 1990 and 1991. They worked alongside men, flying helicopters, driving trucks, guarding bases and firing missiles as Americans at home watched on television news.

Officially women were banned from combat. But there were no clear front lines. Women soldiers and Marines were at risk wherever Scud missiles fell.

"They always said the American public will not live with women coming back in body bags," said Vaught. "Well, they did. We found out there wasn't a big reaction from the public. They recognized that these women were there doing their jobs. We have adjusted to that as a people."

After the Gulf War, jobs flying combat planes and serving on warships were opened to women. And some restrictions on combat-related jobs in the Army and Marines were eased.
---
AFTER 9/11

More than 200,000 women serve in the military now - 15 percent of a force of 1.4 million. And the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have obliterated any remaining notion that they can be kept out of the fight.

With the military straining to staff two wars at once, everyone was needed. But battle lines were jagged; insurgents could be anywhere. Women in support jobs found themselves in firefights and blasted by roadside bombs. And their gender made them especially valuable on some patrols: They could search and interview Muslim women whose culture forbid such contact with men.

In 2012, to reflect the new realities, the Defense Department changed its rules to officially allow women into many jobs they were already doing, but in units closer to the fighting. They were still banned from the most dangerous jobs, such as being infantry soldiers or Special Operations commandos.

On Thursday, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced an end to the ban on women in combat. Women have become an integral part of the service, fighting and dying alongside men, Panetta said. In fact, 152 women in uniform have died in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"The time has come," he said, "for our policies to recognize that reality."


Thursday, January 24, 2013

Cops: Argument With Exterminator Led To Murder Of CHOP Doctor

Cops: Argument With Exterminator Led To Murder Of CHOP Doctor















PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — An argument between an exterminator and a Center City Philadelphia doctor led to her gruesome death inside the basement of her home, police said today.
Police identified the suspect as 36-year-old Jason Smith of Levittown, Pa.  Smith was charged with murder by police this morning.

Smith was taken into police custody Wednesday evening at his home in Levittown, Bucks County, and was brought to Philadelphia police headquarters.  He was questioned and later charged in the death of 35-year-old Dr. Melissa Ketunut.

Police say that Smith confessed to the crime and sources say that Smith told investigators that he committed the crime because he felt like Ketunuti was “disrespecting” him and was making fun of him.

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

Reports: JJ Abrams to direct next 'Star Wars'

Reports: JJ Abrams to direct next 'Star Wars' 

AP Photo
FILE - In this Jan. 8, 2013 file photo, J.J. Abrams arrives at the Winter TCA Fox All-Star Party at the Langham Huntington Hotel in Pasadena, Calif. According to multiple reports, Abrams is set to direct the next installment of “Star Wars,” which Disney has said will be “Episode 7” and due out in 2015. Disney bought “Star Wars” maker Lucasfilm last month for $4.06 billion.

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Another universe of sci-fi fans has been put in the hands of J.J. Abrams.

According to multiple trade reports, Abrams is set to direct the next installment of "Star Wars," which Disney has said will be "Episode 7" and due out in 2015. Disney bought "Star Wars" maker Lucasfilm last month for $4.06 billion.

The Emmy-award-winning director of the TV show "Lost" also captained the reboot of "Star Trek" for rival studio Paramount Pictures, with the next installment in that series, "Star Trek: Into Darkness," set to hit theaters May 17.

Citing unnamed sources, the news was reported earlier by Hollywood trade outlets The Wrap, The Hollywood Reporter and Daily Variety.

Messages left by The Associated Press for Abrams' representatives as well as Disney and Lucasfilm were not immediately returned.

Soon after the news broke Thursday afternoon, websites were flush with chatter. On Twitter, "J.J. Abrams," "Star Wars" and "(hash)Star Trek" were all trending topics.

Despite denying his interest in directing the next "Star Wars" following The Walt Disney Co.'s October announcement it was buying Lucasfilm, many people pegged Abrams as the most obvious choice.

Abrams even spoke about the plot of the original "Star Wars" in the lecture series "TED Talks" in March 2007.

"He took the `Star Trek' franchise, which was just drowning in misery, and he was able to bring that back to life," said Adam Frazier a staff writer for the entertainment website GeeksofDoom.com. "If there's anyone that can do it with `Star Wars' I think it's him."

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Social Worker Testifies About Accuser In Sex Abuse Case Against Philadelphia Priest, Teacher


Social Worker Testifies About Accuser In Sex Abuse Case Against Philadelphia Priest, Teacher

(Phila. PD photos) 
 
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A church social worker believed a longtime heroin addict was sober when he first accused two priests and a teacher of raping him, although the accuser attributes changes to his story to the fact he was high — and nearly “comatose” — that day.

Louise Hagner, a victim assistance coordinator for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia, testified Wednesday at the trial of two of the three men accused. The defense called her to try to discredit the accuser.

For full story go to: http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

UPDATE: $35,000 Reward Offered In Murder Of CHOP Doctor

UPDATE: $35,000 Reward Offered In Murder Of CHOP Doctor















PHILADELPHIA (CBS/AP) — A reward of $35,000 is now being offered for the arrest and conviction of the suspect responsible for the gruesome murder of a doctor who was found bound and burned inside her Center City apartment earlier this week.

Melissa Ketunuti’s partially nude body was found on fire by her dog walker in the basement of her row home in the 1700 block of Naudain Street Monday afternoon.


Investigators said the cause of death was likely strangulation: a rope had been found around her neck. Investigators also said Ketunuti’s wrists and ankles were tied behind her back.

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

Feds Add 2 Murder Charges In Tacony ‘Basement of Horrors’ Case

Feds Add 2 Murder Charges In Tacony ‘Basement of Horrors’ Case















PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Five people have been indicted by a federal grand jury in connection with the notorious Philadelphia “Basement of Horrors” case. The federal indictment includes 196 counts of hate crimes, kidnapping, sex trafficking and, now, two counts of murder.

Authorities allege that two of the six adult victims died from their inhuman treatment at the hands of the defendants — one in Virginia, one in Philadelphia as the the ring moved from state to state.

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Police Identify Body Of Burned CHOP Doctor Found Inside Center City Home

Police Identify Body Of Burned CHOP Doctor Found Inside Center City Home

(credit: Kristen Johanson)

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia police have released the name of the woman whose burned body was found in the basement of her Center City row home Monday afternoon.

Investigators said the cause of death was likely strangulation: a rope had been found around her neck.
And they say 35-year-old Melissa Ketunuti’s partially nude body was on fire, found by her dog walker, in the basement of her row home in the 1700 block of Naudain Street.

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

Monday, January 21, 2013

Dangerous Cold Moving Into The Region

Dangerous Cold Moving Into The Region














PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The coldest air thus far this season is taking over, and being reinforced by a quickly evolving and fast-moving system that will also usher in a little light snow mainly late this evening, just enough to drop a nuisance coating across the Delaware Valley.

Skies quickly clear overnight, but we’re left in Mother Nature’s freezer for a few days!

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Prominent Philadelphia Activist, Happy Fernandez, Dead At 74

Prominent Philadelphia Activist, Happy Fernandez, Dead At 74
 
(Credit: Moore College of Art Website)

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A major figure in Philadelphia politics and education, has passed away.
74-year-old Happy Fernadez died of complications of a stroke Saturday.

In a town known for rough and tumble politics, Happy Fernandez was different, a strong advocate of public education, a soft spoken but savvy person who was the first woman as a democrat to win an at large council seat; the first woman to run for the nomination for mayor in 1999, although unsuccessful at that point; and served for many years as president of Moore College of Art, raising its profile.

For full story go to:  http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/

Friday, January 18, 2013

Obama backers aim to outflank NRA on gun control

Obama backers aim to outflank NRA on gun control 

AP Photo
FILE - This Jan. 16, 2013 file photo shows President Barack Obama, accompanied by Vice President Joe Biden, gesturing as he talks about proposals to reduce gun violence, in the South Court Auditorium at the White House in Washington. Supporters of President Barack Obama's gun control plans are plotting a methodical, state-by-state campaign to try to persuade key lawmakers that it's in their political interest to back new restrictions. To do that, they have to overcome two decades of conventional wisdom that gun control is bad politics _ and the National Rifle Association is confident its supporters will prevail.
 

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Supporters of President Barack Obama's gun-control proposals are planning a methodical, state-by-state campaign to try to persuade key lawmakers that it's in their political interest to back his sweeping effort to crack down on firearms and ammunition sales and expand criminal background checks.

To succeed will require overturning two decades of conventional wisdom that gun control is bad politics.
The National Rifle Association is confident that argument won't sell. But with polls showing majorities supporting new gun laws a month after the Connecticut shooting deaths of 20 schoolchildren and six adults, gun-control activists say the political calculus has changed. Their goal in coming weeks is to convince lawmakers of that, too, and to counter the NRA's proven ability to mobilize voters against any proposals limiting access to guns.

The gun-control advocates are focused first on the Senate, which is expected to act before the House on Obama's gun proposals. How Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., proceeds will depend in part on what he hears from a handful of Democrats in more conservative states where voters favor gun rights. These include some who are eyeing re-election fights in 2014, such as Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Mark Begich of Alaska and Max Baucus of Montana.

"We need to tell our members of Congress that they've got to stand up for sensible gun laws, and if they do that, we will stand up for them, and if they don't we will stand up for whoever runs against them," New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg told the U.S. Conference of Mayors Friday. "Because that's exactly what the NRA is trying to do."

Bloomberg's group, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, is among a coalition of some 50 labor unions, advocacy groups and others that have been meeting since before Christmas to plot strategy, in loose coordination with the White House, according to people involved.

Just hours after Obama rolled out his gun proposals on Wednesday, the group gathered at the headquarters of the National Education Association to game out their plans. As of Friday, voters' calls to Reid's office were running two-to-one against Obama's proposals, a Reid aide said.

Never far from such Democrats' minds is what happened in 1994, when the party suffered widespread election losses after backing President Bill Clinton's crime bill featuring a ban on assault weapons. Clinton and others credited the NRA's campaigning with a big role in those Democrats' defeats. And when the assault weapons ban came up for congressional renewal in 2004, it failed.

The goal of gun-control supporters will be to convince Democrats like Pryor, Begich and Baucus through phone calls, appearances at town hall meetings, print and TV ads and other means that voters in their state will support them if they back Obama's plans.

One group involved, the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, ran print ads in North Dakota newspapers criticizing newly elected Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp after she expressed doubts about Obama's proposals.

Activists have also identified a few Senate Republicans they hope to sway, including Mark Kirk of Illinois and Susan Collins of Maine. In the House, they're focused on 35 to 40 Republicans in suburban areas or districts carried by Obama, where voters might be more supportive of gun-control measures.

"We have a million grass-roots supporters who have sent almost 200,000 emails to Congress, tens of thousands of phone calls and are ready to go to town hall meetings and camp out if they have to," said Mark Glaze, director of the mayors group. He said of lawmakers: "In the end I'm confident that enough of them will look past the NRA's $2,000 contribution and do what the public is demanding."

But the NRA, which claims some 4 million members, has already activated its base, issuing a fiery appeal this week in which Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre warned backers: "It's about banning your guns, PERIOD! ... I warned you this day was coming and now it's here. This is the fight of the century."

As publicity spreads about Obama's proposals the NRA has been adding about 8,000 members a day, according to the group's president, David Keene. The NRA grades lawmakers on votes and has had apparent success in swaying congressional debates for years.

"We support the folks who've helped us in the past, and we remind them that we're also interested in what they do today and tomorrow," Keene said. "I'm convinced that once this thing gets debated the folks who've been with us in the past are probably going to be with us in the future."

Obama's call for an assault weapons ban is a particularly heavy lift, but backers are more optimistic about increased background checks, which were favored by 84 percent in an Associated Press-GfK poll this week.

Supporters hope those kinds of poll numbers will help move lawmakers to buck history and the NRA and vote in favor of gun-control bills.

"We definitely have our work cut out for us. The math's not with us right now in terms of the votes," said Andy Pelosi, president of Gun Free Kids. "It's going to be difficult, but I am optimistic. I think the tone in the country is much, much different, and you can't underestimate that."


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