Archive: June, 2013
Happy Friday. Finish off the week with a quick look at five stories we're following today:
1. Sixers trades, draft, coaching rumors: The 76ers traded point guard Jrue Holiday to the New Orleans Pelicans during Thursday night's NBA draft, acquiring the rights to sixth overall pick Nerlens Noel. The Sixers also got Michael Carter-Williams with the 11th overall selection. Here's what you need to know about Noel and Carter-Williams, and a round-up of fan reaction. In other NBA news, the Sixers denied reports that the team decided to hire San Antonio Spurs assistant Brett Brown as the new coach, and local players were largely bypassed during the draft. Weigh in: Vote on what you think of the Holiday-Noel trade and how you would grade the Carter-Williams pick.
2. SEPTA fares, changes to passes: Higher SEPTA fares go into effect Monday, so this is the last weekend to stock up on tokens for the transit agency's first fare hike in three years. And TransPasses and TrailPasses are eliminating the "M" and "F" stickers that identify the passholder's gender.
Texas executed its 500th inmate this week. The state has carried out nearly 40 percent of executions in the United States since 1976, when the Supreme Court allowed capital punishment to resume.
We took at look at which states have executed the most inmates, and which have the most prisoners currently on death row, using data from the Death Penalty Information Center. Pennsylvania has one of the largest death row populations, but has carried out just a few executions.
Most executions since 1976:
1. Texas, 500 executions
2. Virginia, 110
3. Oklahoma, 105
4. Florida, 77
5. Missouri, 68
6. Alabama, 55
7. Georgia, 53
8. Ohio, 51
9. North Carolina, 43
9. South Carolina, 43
Here's a quick look at five stories we're following today:
1. What's next for gay marriage?: The Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that a provision of the federal Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional and backers of California's Proposition 8 didn't have standing to challenge lower court rulings about the ballot initiative. But here in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, advocates on both sides say the same-sex marriage issue is far from settled. Still, gay-rights supporters here were joyous at the decisions. In New Jersey -- where same-sex couples can enter civil unions -- some Democratic lawmakers are contemplating how to bring gay marriage to the state, while Gov. Christie dismissed the high court's ruling as "wrong." Here's a primer on what the rulings mean. And, in case you missed it, the plaintiff in the DOMA case is a Temple grad.
2. Gandolfini funeral: Funeral services for actor James Gandolfini are scheduled to take place in New York City today. The New Jersey native and "The Sopranos" star died of a heart attack while vacationing in Italy last week.
Police say Daniel Cook Jr. was killed in Philadelphia after he showed up to look at an all-terrain vehicle that was being sold on Craigslist. A 23-year-old man, Thomas Coffee, is charged with fatally shooting Cook.
Here are 10 other killings in which the victims and assailants met on the online classified-ad site.
Here's your daily look at five stories we're following:
1. Supreme Court and same-sex marriage: The high court is expected to release its decisions in two major same-sex marriage cases today, the last decision day of the court's term. The cases concern California's Prop 8, the 2008 ballot initiative that banned gay marriage in the state, and the federal Defense of Marriage Act. It has already been a high-profile week for the court: The justices struck down a major part of the Voting Rights Act on Tuesday, and sent a University of Texas affirmative action case back to a lower court on Monday. If you need to catch up on yesterday's court action, here are the answers to your questions about the VRA and the court's ruling.
2. Hearing for man charged in building collapse: Sean Benschop, the excavator operator facing involuntary manslaughter and other charges in this month's deadly building collapse at 22nd and Market streets, is due in court today for a preliminary hearing. Authorities say he was impaired by marijuana and pain killers when operating heavy equipment at the demolition site.
Powerball's latest jackpot-winning ticket, purchased at a Philadelphia beer outlet, will be the fourth biggest prize ever awarded in Pennsylvania. Only one Philly win was bigger, and the state record was set by a ticket bought in Bucks County. Here are the top winners in roughly reverse order of richness.
Both of those were Powerball wins as well.
Not included are three jackpots that got divided into portions smaller than $50 million. The biggest was a $115.5 million Super 7 jackpot won by 14 tickets on April 26, 1989.
Here's your daily look at five stories to know about:
1. Major gift for CHOP: The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia will announce its largest gift ever today. The $50 million donation from the Buerger family, which owns a financial-services firm in Fort Washington, will go toward a $425 million outpatient center. The Buerger Center for Advanced Pediatric Care, being built on the hospital's University City campus, is expected to open in 2015.
2. Clinton at NCC: Former President Bill Clinton will give the keynote address at a symposium about states' finances at the National Constitution Center today. The event is the last of four dialogues about federalism organized by the State Budget Crisis Task Force.
It's Monday. Ease into the week with your quick round-up of stories to know about:
1. Powerball winner in Point Breeze: The winning ticket for the $131.5 million Powerball jackpot was sold at a Point Breeze beer distributor. Owner Gary Patel will receive a $100,000 bonus for selling the lucky ticket. The winner could be identified as early as today.
2. Grim day for laid-off school employees: Today is the last day on the job for the nearly 4,000 Philadelphia School District employees were laid off as the district struggles to close a $304 million budget gap.