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Inquirer Daily News

Archive: July, 2009

POSTED: Thursday, July 30, 2009, 11:33 PM

The Daily News' Kitty Caparella has the latest on last month's double murder at the trendy Piazza at Schmidts:

All three of the suspected gunmen who police say were seen on surveillance video fatally shooting two people in the Piazza at Schmidts complex last month have been arrested.

Detectives say 28-year-old Antonio Wright and 33-year-old Donnell Murchison were charged today with conspiracy murder in the June 27 shootings in the seventh-floor hallway of the Navona apartment building at that complex.

David Gambacorta @ 11:33 PM  Permalink | 0
POSTED: Thursday, July 30, 2009, 11:24 PM

An apparent argument over a girl caused gunshots to ring out in South Philadelphia earlier tonight. Two men – one 19, the other 20 – were both wounded in neck on Wolf Street near 26th shortly before 8:30 p.m., said Lt. Martin Derbyshire, of South Detectives.

 
Both victims were admitted to the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in critical condition. Derbyshire said investigators found two guns at the scene. It was unclear if the victims had attempted to return fire at the shooter, he added. Tipsters can contact investigators at 215-686-3013.
David Gambacorta @ 11:24 PM  Permalink | 0
POSTED: Wednesday, July 29, 2009, 11:36 PM

Investigators hunting for the man who shot and critically wounded Dwight Dixon on July 21 have served a search warrant at Playmakers, the Fairmount bar owned by NFL star Marvin Harrison, the Daily News has learned.
Dixon was riddled with seven bullets while he sat inside a Toyota Camry on Girard Avenue near 28th Street, just two blocks north of Harrison’s bar, police said.
Dixon, 33, who last year claimed that Harrison shot him in the hand following a fistfight — told an officer at the scene of the July 21 shooting that he believed the shooter had been hired by Harrison.
A law-enforcement source said that detectives, who executed the warrant on Saturday, wanted to review the bar’s surveillance footage to see if the gunman — a 6-foot-tall black man who wore a dark hooded jacket, jeans and white sneakers — was inside Playmakers before the shooting.
Investigators are waiting for the footage to be made available, the source said.
Police haven’t spoken with Harrison, the former Indianapolis Colts wide receiver, nor have they found any evidence that he was involved in the July 21 shooting, the source added.
Jerome Brown, the attorney who represented Harrison during last year’s investigation, declined to comment yesterday to the Daily News.
Detectives still haven’t spoken to Dixon, who remains unconscious in an intensive-care unit at Hahnemann University Hospital.
Doctors at Hahnemann spent 10 hours operating on Dixon when he arrived last week with wounds to his chest, stomach and arm.
Surveillance footage filmed by cameras affixed to the front of a Valu-Plus on Girard Avenue showed the gunman shoot repeatedly at Dixon, who was sitting in the driver’s seat of a rental car.
Police last week released images of the triggerman fleeing on foot with his head lowered, making it impossible for his face to be viewed clearly.
 

David Gambacorta @ 11:36 PM  Permalink | 0
POSTED: Tuesday, July 28, 2009, 5:38 PM

A 47-year-old man was arrested in South Philadelphia Monday morning, moments after he allegedly tried to lure a 12-year-old boy into his car.

Police officials said an officer observed Suwardy Gampo, who was in his car, talking to the boy on Morris Street near 3rd at about 8:15 a.m. Gampo drove off after a brief conversation. The officer approached the boy, who claimed Gampo, of Tasker Street near Broad, had asked him to go to Home Depot with him, police said. The boy told the cop he didn't know Gampo.

Gampo was arrested a short while later and charged with luring a child into a motor vehicle and recklessly endangering another person.

David Gambacorta @ 5:38 PM  Permalink | 0
POSTED: Thursday, July 23, 2009, 11:39 PM

The controversial Web forum domelights.com has been disabled following a Police Department investigation into alleged threats made against the president of a black police officer’s organization that sued the site for allowing posters to leave racist remarks. Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey launched the investigation Wednesday, two days after the Guardian Civic League filed a request for a court injunction to ban officers from using the site while on duty.

Since the request was filed, numerous posts have sprung up targeting League President Rochelle Bilal, including one saying that she should be “gang-raped.” The group filed a federal lawsuit last week that described the site as a forum for racist content that created a hostile environment for black officers. For the last two days, officers from Homeland Security escorted Bilal to and from work and the department had a police cruiser stationed outside of the league’s headquarters on 15th Street near Girard Avenue. But since becoming a vocal critic of some of her fellow officers, Bilal said she’s never taken the same route to work.
 
“A lot of my people are concerned,” she said. “You got crazy people out there, of course I’m concerned.”
 
A hearing is scheduled for Aug. 3 to find out the result of the injunction request. The founder of the site, repeatedly identified in the suit as McQ, is believed to be Fred McQuiggan, a police sergeant in Information Technology and Communications Services. In recent postings, McQuiggan, of Torresdale, has said he rejects racist or sexist comments on the site and that he never administers domelights while on duty.
Dafney Tales @ 11:39 PM  Permalink | 0
POSTED: Thursday, July 23, 2009, 4:39 PM

Surveillance images released today by police show the man who shot and critically wounded Dwight Dixon in Fairmount earlier this week.

The gunman, however, is shown running with his head lowered, in a dark jacket in jeans. He has not been identified.

Dixon, 33, who last year claimed he had been shot by NFL star Marvin Harrison, was shot seven times on Girard Avenue near 28th Street shortly before 11 a.m. on Tuesday. The shooting occurred two blocks away from Playmakers, a club Harrison owns.

David Gambacorta @ 4:39 PM  Permalink | 0
POSTED: Wednesday, July 22, 2009, 10:17 PM

Robert Nixon, another local man who claimed to have been shot last year by Marvin Harrison, is expected to file a civil lawsuit against the NFL star tomorrow.
Wadud Ahmad, Nixon’s attorney, said the suit will seek “well over $100,000” for physical and psychological damage that was caused on April 29, 2008, when Nixon said he was wounded in the back by a bullet fired from Harrison’s gun in North Philadelphia.
“That bullet is still in his back,” Ahmad said. “He still experiences extreme discomfort.”
Nixon previously told authorities that he had witnessed Harrison shoot at another man, Dwight Dixon, after a fistfight near a garage Harrison owns on Thompson Street near 25th.
Ahmad said Nixon was wounded as he tried to run from the scene. Dixon was also wounded in the left hand during that incident.
A lengthy police investigation found that at least five bullets had been fired that day from a Belgian-made handgun Harrison owns.
District Attorney Lynne Abraham announced in January that she was not going to file charges against Harrison because prosecutors couldn’t vouch for the credibility of Dixon, Nixon and others.
Abraham said the men at the center of the case gave investigators nine different versions of the shooting.
Nixon — who was placed in witness protection during the investigation — “was left to wonder why his life doesn’t have any value,” Ahmad said.

Dixon, meanwhile, is still fighting for his life after a gunman riddled him with seven bullets in Fairmount shortly before 11 a.m. Tuesday.
The 33-year-old was admitted to Hahnemann University Hospital in critical condition. Investigators said last night that they still knew of no suspects or motives.
“He’s in pretty bad shape. They operated on him for 10 hours, and right now, he’s unresponsive,” said Robert Gamburg, the attorney who represents Dixon in a civil suit that was filed against Harrison last fall.

David Gambacorta @ 10:17 PM  Permalink | 0
POSTED: Tuesday, July 21, 2009, 11:35 PM

A 22-year-old man is dead after a police officer shot him after the man allegedly went for his partner’s weapon in Fern Rock last night, police said. At 8:44 p.m., two officers responded to a report of a man exposing himself near a home on Marshall Street near Spencer, said spokesman Lt. Frank Vanore. Police said that the man became combative and that a struggle ensued between him and one of the officers. During the struggle, police said, the man reached for the cop’s handgun, discharging it once. The clip fell from the gun and it was at that time the other officer fired at the man, striking him once in the chest, police said.

The man, who was not identified by police, was pronounced dead at the scene. Both officers were treated at Albert Einstein Medical Center for abrasions and one for a possible broken wrist.
 
Relatives and friends of the man, who they called “D. Vito” said he couldn’t have posed much of a threat to the cops.
 
“His knees were all messed up. He walked with a cane,” said one relative, who asked not to be identified. A childhood friend who lives on the block and also asked not to be named, said D. Vito was homeless and would sometimes stay at his place.
 
“He was having family problems,” he said.
 
Meanwhile, around the corner at Fisher Park, 7th and Spencer streets, investigators combed through foliage after reports of gunshots being fired there shortly after the fatal police-involved shooting earlier.
 
Further details will become available as investigation continues.
Dafney Tales @ 11:35 PM  Permalink | 0
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