Updated: 28 min 52 sec ago
The Daily Numbers: 1, as in April 1, Happy April Fools’ Day! 27, age of girlfriend of slain Darby Borough Officer Mark Hudson. She now is charged in his shooting death.1st and 3rd degree murder charges filed against Tyaina Finch.50 entities believed to have expressed an interest in buying the Crozer-Keystone Health System.5 hospitals operated by the system.6,000 employees, including 1,100 doctors, in the Crozer system.30,000 dollar reduction in cost expected by County Council in electric costs in deal to shift service to PPL.2.3 million dollars, how much Delco plans to spend in 2016 on energy to all county facilities.83, age of victim in fatal fire in Darby Township.38,000 dollar Medicaid scam charged to Sharon Hill man.2 people found dead in a Montco home. They had been hacked with a chain saw. 40,000 dollar annual pension for former Pa. Gov. Tom Corbett.4 firefighters taken hostage by fellow fireman in Montco. He had been fired from his post. He surrendered without incident.103 million dollars, how much Mayor Nutter want to raise for Philly schools by raising property taxes.60-57 loss for Temple to Miami at the NIT semifinals.30 years to the day when Villanova stunned the world - and Georgetown - in the NCAA final.4 homers surrendered by Phils’ pitchers vs. Blue Jays in Grapefruit League loss.2.3 million dollar deal for WR Miles Austin with the Eagles.3 times in his career that Austin has been able to suit up for all 16 games.47 passes for 568 yards and 2 TDs last year for Austin with the Browns. Call me a Phanatic: A look at the ups and downs of being a Philadelphia sports fan.Temple is now out. We’re left with only the Phillies. How long ‘til NFL Draft Day again? I Don’t Get It: Kids taking and posting naked pictures of themselves and friends online. I don’t it. Today’s Upper: Kudos to everyone who manages to avoid some kind of silly April Fools’ joke today. Quote Box: “Babe, I don’t think I’m going to make it.”- Last words of Darby Borough Officer Mark Hudson, according to his girlfriend. She’s now charged in his death.
I am reminded once again how glad I am I grew up when I did. There was no Internet when I was a kid.Look, I was a numbskull. I did a lot of dumb things. Of course, I can deny all of them now that I am well into 'dad' mode.Or, as I always used to tell my kids, "Do as I say, not as I did."The truth is neither my son or daughter caused their mother or I a fraction of the grief I caused my parent.Or maybe they just didn't tell us.As for my exploits, I now enjoy total deniability. There is no evidence.That is not often the case today.Almost everything we do is captured on video, including some things that once would be considered inconceivable.Am I the only person who is not posting nude pictures of himself on the Internet?The latest saga of cyber hijinks comes to us from North Penn High School in Lansdale.It seems several young men there were posting pictures of nude or semi-nude female classmates on an Internet file-sharing site DropBox.Now the school is in an uproar, meetings are being held with between the students and principal after a threatened walkout was short-circuited, and police are investigating.I will offer these kids the same advice I give to every group of students I address. Be very careful what you do - and post - online.Privacy? Forget it.I doubt the girls depicted in some of these photos ever expected to see them show up on the Internet.That's part of the problem. The Internet is something akin to the Wild, Wild West.Once something gets posted, it is almost impossible to get back. Take it from someone who makes mistakes online very morning. Thankfully, most of my errors are simple typos.I guess you could suggest that these kids should not be taking these pictures in the first place. But kids often do dumb things. I know. I was a kid once. A couple of lifetimes ago.But the Internet has changed everything.An image you thought you were sharing with your boyfriend or someone else can - with the click of a mouse - be shared with the world. "Those pictures were supposed to be private," said one 18-year-old high school student.That's the problem. With the Internet, nothing is really private. "They did not know it would be posted online for everyone to see."They do now.Keep that in mind. If you don't want the world to read it, or see it, don't post it online.
One person who no doubt wishes today's news was some kind of April Fools' joke would be state Attorney General Kathleen Kane. The state Supreme Court gave her a serious setback yesterday, ruling against her claim while saying a Montgomery County judge had the legal authority to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate her dealings - specifically leaks from her office.That same grand jury, you may remember, recommended Kane face criminal charges in the case.You can get all the details here.The ball now goes back into the lap of Montco District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman. It will be her call as to whether or not to file charges against the state's top law enforcement officer.Kane's spokesman Lanny Davis issued a statement on her behalf, saying that "we have faith in the judicial system and that the district attorney of Montgomery County will look at the evidence and the law and find that Attorney General Kane is innocent of any violations of the law."The vote on the high court was 4-1 against Kane, with the only justice ruling in her favor being Judge Debra M. Todd. Another Democrat, Max Baer, joined his GOP colleagues Chief Justice Thomas Saylor, Michael H. Eakin and Correale Stevens in ruling against Kane. Ferman has given no indication on a timetable for when she might rule on whether to file charges against Kane.
Happy April Fools' Day! If you're expecting a prank, you've come to the wrong place. I've seen way too many newspapers and websites get themselves in all kinds of hot water by what they thought was a clever April 1 parody, which wound up just one more offensive glitch in what is becoming an increasingly touchy area.Actually, I thought the tech gods already were conspiring to pull the wool over my eyes. The Internet was out in the building when I got into the office this morning. It's amazing how dependent we are today on technology. Luckily, the outage, which started late last night, was corrected fairly quickly. One disaster averted. The other isn't so easy. I figure we've already been subject to a classic April Fools' stunt.Courtesy of Mother Nature.Yes, I am still wearing a winter coat to work. I routinely refuse to don a winter coat before Thanksgiving. I would like to think I could have put it in the closet by now. Wrong again. I refuse to put on gloves, although I could use them.My car odometer read a balmy 31 degrees when I got to work.I have not even thought of pulling out the golf sticks yet.Very funny, Mother Nature.The forecast looks like we're going to be in this pattern through the weekend. While we might hit the 60s tomorrow, the weekend will bring more of the same old chilly weather, with the high on Easter Sunday struggling to hit the low 50s.It's the winter that won't end, and I find nothing 'foolish' about it.Here's your full forecast.
The Daily Numbers: 85,000 dollars, amount the Delco D.A. said was scammed during a massive insurance fraud ring in the county. 11 people now facing charges in connection with the case.4 years, how long the D.A. had the Darby Borough auto repair shop at center of probe under investigation.3 years of planning that went into the county’s new open space plan, which was rolled out Monday night.1,100 pages in the report.22 million dollars worth of improvements to county park system over the next 30 years.558,979 people living in the county as of 2010.27, age of girlfriend of slain Darby Borough Officer Mark Hudson. She now faces charges in connection with a domestic incident last summer. No charges have been filed in his shooting death.1 worker killed during an accident Monday at the Sunoco Logistics plant in Marcus Hook.11 buildings being knocked down at MacDade Boulevard and Kedron Avenue to make way for a new Wawa.38 million dollars awarded to family members of of 2 women killed by co-worker in shooting at food plant.1 person killed during bizarre incident at the NSA headquarters at Ford Meade in Maryland.113-111 loss for the Sixers at the hands of the Lakers.1 year extension for Eagles LB DeMeco Ryans.18-4 rout of the Phils by the Pirates in game that also featured bench-clearing brawl. Call me a Phanatic: A look at the ups and downs of being a Philadelphia sports fan.Just a few more days before we see those exciting 2015 Phils. If Dom Brown starts season on the DL, the Phils’ starting outfield will count 7 home runs among all 3 last season. I Don’t Get It: A bench-clearing brawl in an exhibition game? I don’t get it. Today’s Upper: Kudos to the Delco D.A. for bringing the hammer down on a massive auto repair insurance fraud ring. Quote Box: “The fire house gave him something positive to do, rather than standing around on the street corner.”- Yeadon Fire Chief Mike DiIenno, on slain Darby Officer Mark Hudson, who also was a volunteer firefighter.
That didn't take long. Obviously, Wawa doesn't mess around.Maybe it's the presence of that upstart Royal Farms, which has recently opened its first locations in the county and is planning several more.They already are locked in something of a gas war in Ridley, with the Wawa next to the municipal building on Morton Avenue and the nearby Royal Farms store consistently selling gas cheaper than even other local Wawas.And now Wawa will have some new ammo on the war.They are in the process of demolishing buildings at the intersection of MacDade Boulevard and Route 420 (Kedron Avenue), across the street from Nifty Fifties. Yes, it will be another super store, complete with gas pumps. Here are the details. It seems like just a few weeks ago that we took our 'Live From the Newsroom' show to the Delco Let There Be Rock School for a special show featuring Audra McLaughlin.The school has relocated to a spot on MacDade Boulevard.The bulldozers have leveled their old home and the rest of the intersection.You know what they say, Gotta Havva Wawa!Now if they could just figure out the deal with that proposed store on Baltimore Pike on the eastern edge of Media Borough.
The mystery surrounding the death of Darby Borough Police Officer Mark Hudson is beginning to clear up. No one has been charged in the fatal shooting that took his life, but officials have charged his girlfriend, who was in the house at the time of the shooting, in connection with a domestic incident with the officer last summer.You can get all the details here.It's clear there was more than a little strife in the home of Mark Hudson. Now his girlfriend is facing assault and terroristic threat charges from an incident in which she brandished a knife and threatened to kill him.No charges have yet been filed in the murder. It remains under investigation.
I think maybe I've stumbled on to what Chip Kelly is really doing. The Eagles coach is trying to put together the best group of injured players in NFL history.Kelly was at it again yesterday, signing linebacker DeMeco Ryans to a one-year extension. I like Ryans; his teammates call him 'Mufasa' after 'The Lion King' character. He's a born leader. He's also prone to injuries. He missed half the season last year after his second torn Achilles tendon.And that's not all. The Eagles also are in talks with veteran wide receiver Miles Austin. Again, this is a good thing. The Birds need help at wideout since jettisoning DeSean Jackson and losing Jeremy Maclin to Andy Reid and the Kansas City Chiefs.But, of course, there is an asterisk. Austin has missed big chunks of the last two seasons with injuries.He'll have plenty of company. Quarterback Sam Bradford is still rehabbing from his second ACL tear and apparently had to be talked out of retiring by a coach.So does Kelly know something the rest of us don't? Does he believe his advanced training regimen and smoothies will keep all these guys on the field. I hope so.The truth is, I'm not sure Kelly really has a plan, or if he's just flying by the seat of his pants.All I know is this, something I have stated here before.He'd better be right.
The Daily Numbers: 1 part-time Darby Borough police officer shot and killed in his Darby Township home. 1 person being questioned in the shooting. No charges have yet been filed.3 years, how long Mark Hudson had been on the borough police force. He also was active with Yeadon Fire Co.1,57 million dollars, how much Rose Tree Media School District plans to spend to renovate the Penncrest High School athletic fields, including a new synthetic field and $400,000 for a new track.400 events a year that could be held on the synthetic surface, as opposed to 40 on the natural grass.62,075 dollars contributed to the county Intermediate Unit by Springfield School District.27, age of Sharon Hill man indicted in 2013 Philly jewelry heist.2 people killed in crash of small plane shortly after it took off from Brandywine Airport in West Goshen Sunday.2.43 a gallon, national average price for gas.1.11 below what we were paying last year.2.50 average price in the Philly area.3,64, what we were paying at pump last year.2 bodies found in rubble of building blast in New York City. 21 goals and 55 assists for Flyers Jake Voracek, just 2 points behind points leader Sidney Crosby.87-86 win for LeBron James and the Cavs over the Sixers last night.20 points for LeBron James.2 home runs yesterday for Chase Utley. Phillies open season 1 week from today vs. Red Sox at Citizens Bank Park.76-70 win for Michigan State over Louisville in OT to make the Final Four.66-52 win for Duke over Gonzaga.12th trip to Final Four for Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski. Call me a Phanatic: A look at the ups and downs of being a Philadelphia sports fan.Opening day for the Phillies is one week from today at Citizens Bank Park. No word on chance of snow flurries. I Don’t Get It: It was snowing this morning on March 30. I don’t get it. Today’s Upper: Kudos to Delaware County, which is considering setting up a special court to attack DUI cases. A similar plan already is in place in Montco. Quote Box: “He was a shining star in the department.”- Darby Borough Police Chief Bob Smythe, on Officer Mark Hudson, who was shot and killed in his home.
We now know the name of the off-duty Darby Borough officer killed in a shooting in his home. What we don't know yet is why?The county District Attorney's office and investigators were saying very little about the fatal shooting of Mark Hudson, who was a part-time officer in Darby Borough referred to as a 'shining star' in the department by Chief Bob Smythe. Hudson also was active with the Yeadon Fire Co.A person who was in the house on Magnolia Avenue in Darby Township with Hudson at the time of the shooting was taken into custody. Charges in the case could be filed today.We'll give you the latest.
I used my print column today to talk about the debacle surrounding the three endorsed Democrats being tossed from the May primary ballot in a petition challenge. There is a lot of finger-pointing going on, with laments of how this is what happens under one-party rule and a system that is less than friednly to Democrats.All of that may be true.It doesn't change the fact that this wound was largely self-inflicted.The Democrats vow they will appeal all the way to the state Supreme Court.In the meantime, they will need to mount a write-in campaign for the primary in order to qualify to be on the ballot in the November general election.
March apparently has decided to go out the same way it came in. Like a lion. Yes, it is March 30. Yes, those were snowflakes I was driving through on the drive into the office this morning. Don't panic. It's not going to amount to much, unless you live up in the Poconos, where it is snowing fairly heavily. We'll also see some rain this morning, before it warms up later this afternoon, pushing close to 60. Here's the full forecast.
The Daily Numbers: 299 bucks, cost of a pair of Beats by Dre headphones. Police believe that’s what Arkel Garcia was after when he killed Marple Newtown grad Christian Massey. 21, age of Garcia, who was sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole.25, age of Amanda De Guio, a mother of 2 from Upper Darby who has been missing since June.400 acres of Mount Moriah Cemetery in Yeadon, where a new flagpole will honor veterans.2,400 veterans who are buried there.10-234, the Local union of the United Steelworkers Union who are voting on new contract with Monroe Energy at the Trainer refinery. 500,000 dollar grant for a library expansion in Ridley.34,000 dollars raised to help literacy in Wallingford Swarthmore.59 percent of people in new Franklin & Marshall poll who back Gov. Tom Wolf’s tax plan.39 percent say Pa. is now heading in the right direction. 40 percent who have favorable opinion of Wolf. That’s better rating than former Gov. Tom Corbett had at any point in his 4 years.4 straight days of declines for stock market.40.31 dip for Dow Jones yesterday.79-72 win for Chester Native Bo Ryan and Wisconson over North Carolina.68-60 win for Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and Arizona over Xavier.9-1 win for Ridley over Strath Haven in boys lacrosse. Call me a Phanatic: A look at the ups and downs of being a Philadelphia sports fan.The pride of Chester: Bo Ryan vs. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson in the Elite 8. Gotta’ love it. I Don’t Get It: The idea of slamming a jumbo jet into the ground. I don’t get it. Today’s Upper: Kudos to all those who took part in flag ceremony to honor vets yesterday at Mount Moriah Cemetery in Yeadon. Quote Box: “He didn’t even get what he came there for. He took Chris’ life and left the headphones on the ground.”- Assistant District Attorney Brendan O’Malley, on Arkel Garcia, sentenced to life for the murder of Christian Massey.
Every time there is a huge natural disaster or horrendous crash, I always offer the following warning to my staff. Don't worry, it will somehow works its way back to Delco.It's happened again.Yvonne Selke, who along with her daughter Emily, shown in picture at right, was on the doomed Germanwings flight that crashed in the French Alps, was a Delco native.Yvonne was a graduate of Springfield High School, Class of '75.She still has family living here.The Class of '75 is planning their 40th reunion and it is believed Yvonne was planning to attend.Yvonne Selke lived in Nokesville, Va., and was a valued, longtime employee of Booz Allen Hamilton Inc., a defense contractor in Washington, D.C.Her daughter Emily, who was with her on the doomed flight, was a recent graduate of Drexel University.Booz Allen's chief personnel officer, Betty Thompson, described Selke as "a wonderful co-worker and a dedicated employee who spent her career with the firm." Yvonne Selke worked for Booz Allen for 23 years.We'll try to get reaction from Springfield High as well as those who know her today.
In his battle with Republicans over the state budget, new Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf just picked up a little more ammo. A new Franklin & Marshall College Poll showed the public supports his plan to hike the state sales and income taxes and use the money to boost education funding.Nearly 6 in 10 - 59 percent - of those polled backed the plan, no doubt in large part because it targets the state's most hated levy, property taxes.About 17 percent of those asked identified taxes as the biggest issue in the state.We'll have Wolf's chief of staff, Katie McGinty, here for a visit with the editorial board this morning.I'll ask her about the prospects of getting the Wolf plan through the Legislature.Do you have a question for McGinty? If so email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will add it to my list.A couple of weeks ago, State Rep. Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, who heads the state House Democratic Policy Committee, told me he does not believe the budget will be done by the July 1 deadline.Instead, he sees Republicans, who control both the Senate and House, passing their own "no-tax-hike" spending plan, and then tossing it in Wolf's lap.Sturla believes Wolf will veto it, and then both sides could dig in for an extended standoff.We'll ask McGinty how she sees this playing out.
Villanova may be gone, but Delco is still very well represented in the NCAA men's hoops tourney. Both Chester High standout Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and his Arizona Wildcats and Chester native Bo Ryan, who coaches Wisconsin, were winners last night.Hollis-Jefferson, a former All-Delco player, came back from an injury as the Wildcats held off Xavier.Wisconsin did the same while taking care of North Carolina.Here's the bad news. Only one of them is going to the Final Four.That's because they will face each other Saturday in the Elite Eight.It's the second straight year they have faced each other.Anyone want to argue the prowess of Chester and Delco hoops?
What if they they threw an election and nobody came? We're not talking about voters. We're talking about Democratic candidates. To the surprise of just about no one, other than maybe Delaware County Democratic Party leaders, a county judge yesterday tossed the three endorsed Dem candidates off the May primary ballot. Judge James Proud ruled their nominating petitions were in fact incorrectly filed. Specifically, they failed to file the required statements of financial disclosure with the county clerk. No matter that they correctly filed with the board of elections. A technicality? Maybe. But those are the rules. And these three Democrats didn't follow them.County Democratic Party Chairman David Landau vows an appeal, first to Commonwealth Court and perhaps all the way to the state Supreme Court if necessary.So be it.In the meantime, Democrats may need to try to muster enough write-in votes in the primary to get on the November general election ballot. It is believed they will need at least 250 write-ins to make it.In the meantime, there is more than a little grumbling from within Delco Democrats about this latest black eye for a party that has not been able to get a candidate elected to County Council for more than three decades.Hard to blame them.
Spring has arrived. I know this not because they tell us the thermometer will threaten 70 degrees today, even it will be accompanied by rain. Certainly that should wash away the last remnants of snow that are stubbornly hanging on.Don't worry, temperatures are expected to dip back into the 30s and 40s just in time for the weekend.That's not how I celebrated the unofficial arrival of spring this morning.I welcomed back some old friends.Four-legged ones.I kind of got a sneak peek at what the drive into the office was going to be like even before I got out of my development. Just one street up from mine, as my headlights peered through some early-morning rain and light fog, I picked up that distinctive glint on the side of the road.Yep, the deer are back. Three of them, sauntering right through a neighbor's front yard, and of course right in front of my car. Luckily in the development I'm not going all that fast and was able to stop to let them cross the street.And they weren't alone. I saw three more before I got out of the development.My mind immediately raced to Providence Road, the route I take from West Chester Pike across to the Route 1 Media Bypass at Rose Tree. I figured if I was already seeing deer, they'd be out in force on this road, which seems at times to be overrun with these critters. I wasn't wrong.Instead of just dodging potholes, I spent much of the morning dodging deer as well.Welcome back, fellas. I missed you.Yep, spring is here.
Chip Kelly has spoken. Again.One day after Eagles owner Jeff Lurie met the media, Kelly spent a full hour in front of the microphones Wednesday at the NFL Owners meetings in Phoenix.Kelly answered all the questions. He explained the money behind dealing away the team's all-time rushing leader LeSean McCoy and replacing him with two big-money backs, including DeMarco Murray. He said the team actually wanted to keep Nick Foles while adding Sam Bradford, but the Rams wanted some players at the last minute. He stressed the team is very high on the seemingly always-injured Bradford's potential, without necessarily saying he will in fact be the Eagles starting QB. He indicated Jeremy Maclin got too rich for the Eagles' blood. And maybe most important of all, he touched on the touchy issue of control of the roster and personnel. It's clear that now lies totally in Kelly's hands, with Howie Roseman clearly in a lesser role. But Kelly backed up what Lurie said, that Roseman is still a key part of the team and that he values his input.All of it certainly sounds like a master plan for the Eagles' franchise.So why am I still not convinced.Why do I fear Kelly is in fact thrashing around in the NFL personnel wars, being taken advantage of by more experienced front office types.And why do I still have the nagging feeling that Kelly still is plotting a master coup on Draft Day to get the guy he covets, Oregon QB Marcus Mariota, to run his much-debated 'system.'I hope I'm wrong. I hope all of this works out. Certainly bedraggled Philly fans looking at a long walk through the desert of the final drabs of both the Sixers and Flyers seasons, and the less-than-optimistic outlook for the Phillies, want the Eagles and Kelly to deliver.Right now all we can do is wait. And hope.In Chip We Trust.Do we really have any other choice?
Democrats in Delaware County are used to fighting for their lives. But they don't usually have to fight just to stay no the ballot.But that's the predicament they find themselves in after a mind-numbing problem with the nominating petitions encountered by their candidates for three seats on County Council.Let's just say it's a bit of a bureaucratic nightmare. You can get all the details here.Democrats have not had a win in a County Council race since the mid-1970s, when the Home Rule Charter was passed, eliminating the mandated minority party representation on Council, instead opting to have all five members elected at-large.At this point the Dems might have to settle for winning a petition challenge.If they lose, they could be looking at a very steep longshot, winning a write-in campaign.