<![CDATA[NBC 10 Philadelphia - Local News]]> Copyright 2014 http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/local http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC10_40x125.png NBC 10 Philadelphia http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com en-us Fri, 29 Aug 2014 12:09:45 -0400 Fri, 29 Aug 2014 12:09:45 -0400 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Wildwood Deli Fire Causing Power Outages]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 12:05:29 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/SD-Fire-Engine-Generic.jpg

A two-alarm fire at a Wildwood, New Jersey deli has knocked out power to part of the shore resort.

The blaze broke out at the business along Park Boulevard and West Oak Avenue around 11 a.m. Friday morning, city officials said.

Power was cut to 10,468 customers admist the fire, according to power company AC Electric.

There were no immediate reports of any injuries.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 10 Philadelphia

Photo Credit: Monica Garske]]>
<![CDATA[Students Warned After Teen Attacked in Chester County]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 11:49:45 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Cropped+Caln+Township+Suspect+Sketch.jpg

Caln Township Police are investigating the robbery and sexual assault of a 16-year-old and want students in the area, especially those who walk to school, to be on their guard.

Police in the Chester County, Pa. town are not disclosing the victim's gender.

The teen was attacked Wednesday between 8 and 10 a.m. along a wooded trail north of the intersection of 11th Avenue and Foundry Street. The victim was treated and released from Paoli Hospital.

Police urged the public to be on alert in that area and have contacted school administrators "concerning the safety of students who walk to/from school near the area," according to a police statement.

The attacker is described as early 30s, 5’9” with a thin build. He has short, curly hair and a mustache. He was wearing a plain black hoodie, blue jeans, dark-colored shoes and a watch on his left wrist.

Police released a sketch of the man Friday and are asking anyone with information to contact Investigator James Lippolis at 610-383-1821 or to call 911.

<![CDATA[Injury Update on 2 Hurt in Plane Crash]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 11:16:35 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/192*120/Small+Plane+Crash+Amity.JPG

The two people hurt when their small plane crashed and burned in Pennsylvania earlier this week remained hospitalized Friday.

Two men were hurt when their small plane crashed and caught fire after slamming into a field on the 100 block of Amity Park Road in Amity Township, Berks County Wednesday afternoon.

The plane carried John Bertagna of Amity Township and Steven Bosshard of Manasquan, N.J. at the time it crashed. Both men were rushed to Reading Hospital.

Bertegna remained in fair condition while Steven Bosshurd was in good condition Friday, according to a hospital spokesperson.

Officials with the FAA are investigating the crash. 

Photo Credit: NBC10.com]]>
<![CDATA[Do You Recognize This Man?]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 10:43:03 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Wilmington+robbery+suspect+sketch+aug+21+2014.jpg

Delaware police released a sketch of a robbery suspect, hoping the public can help lead them to the man. He's one of two gunmen who held up three people in front of their home in the Silverside Heights neighborhood of Wilmington, New Castle County.

The victims, ages 16 - 21, were robbed last Thursday, August 21, at midnight. They told police the two men approached as they were getting out of their car in front of the home in the 100 block of Perkins Avenue.

One of the men held a gun to their heads and demanded they empty their pockets.

The robbers fled on foot.

One man is described as 6-feet tall, in his early 20s and thin with facial hair. He was wearing a light-colored jacket, shorts and a dark-colored hat.

The second suspect has the same build and age. He was sporting a dark T-shirt, shorts and a light-colored hat.

Detectives are asking anyone with information to contact the New Castle County Police Department at (302) 395-8110. Citizens can also visit the website at www.nccpd.com or call Crime Stoppers at (800) TIP-3333.

Photo Credit: New Castle County Police]]>
<![CDATA[Mark Your Calendars for the Next Great Shredder Event]]> Tue, 12 Aug 2014 16:27:54 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Shredder+2014+1200x675.jpg

The next Great Shredder Event will be held on Saturday, October 18, 2014 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Wells Fargo Center, 3601 South Broad Street.

This year, Allstate is teaming up with NBC10 and Telemundo62 to help the public protect itself by offering FREE shredding services to permanently destroy personal documents. In addition, your favorite NBC10 and Telemundo62 anchors and reporters will be on-site to greet you, sign autographs, take photos and help you with your items.

Shred-it, the official document destruction service company of the Great Shredder Event, will be on-site to ensure all personal information is kept secure and confidential at all times.

More information about the Great Shredder Event, including specific instructions, directions and event activities, will be posted in the weeks ahead. In the meantime, be sure to mark your calendars for Saturday, October 18th, 2014 for NBC10 and Telemundo62’s next Great Shredder Event!

<![CDATA[Juror Leaves Regusters Kidnapping, Rape Trial]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 11:16:57 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/191*120/CHRISTINA_REGUSTERS_COURT_DAY1.png

A juror was excused from court this morning in the criminal trial against 21-year-old Christina Regusters who is accused of kidnapping and raping a five-year-old Philadelphia girl last year.

The alternate juror was released at the start of court Friday due to an emergency in her family.

The prosecution continued its case against Regusters, who is accused of abducting the victim from her school daycare last winter in the Cobbs Creek neighborhood, sneaking her home in a laundry bag, hiding her naked underneath a bed and sexually assaulting her with a sharp object, repeatedly. The victim was then taken to a nearby park. Her 19-hour ordeal ended when she was found that next morning by a passerby.

Upper Darby Police Officer Michael DeHoratius took the stand this morning, He was the first officer on the scene after the victim was found screaming for help underneath a swing set at the park on the morning of Jan. 14, 2013. She was shivering, dressed in only a T-shirt.

DeHoratius said he picked up the victim, placed her in his patrol car and turned up the heat to keep her warm. He said she was dirty and smelled of feces.

Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia later determined she had been sexually assaulted with a sharp object requiring her to undergo multiple surgeries so that her body could heal.

The victim testified with self assuredness earlier this week, facing her accused attacker in court. The victim's mother also took the stand Wednesday with emotional testimony and pictures. She described how the attack changed her daughter's life.

Prosecutors allege Regusters acted alone. She is the only person charged in the case. Regusters maintains her innocence. Her attorney, Fred Harrison, Jr., says other people were involved. Regusters is expected to take the stand in her own defense.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 10 Philadelphia

<![CDATA[Funeral Held for NJ Student Who Died in Israel]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 10:54:53 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/215*120/Missing+Yeshiva+Student+Aaron+Sofer.JPG

Mourners have buried a religious school student from New Jersey who disappeared while hiking on the outskirts of Jerusalem.

Friday's funeral in Israel came after authorities determined Aharon Sofer was not the victim of foul play or a militant attack. Israeli media speculated that he had fallen or died of dehydration.

The body of the 23-year-old from Lakewood was found on Thursday in the same area where Sofer disappeared after he got separated from a friend while hiking last week.

Sofer was an ultra-Orthodox student at a yeshiva, a Jewish religious school, named for its founder Rabbi Tzvi Kaplan.

Sofer's parents had flown to Israel to assist with the search in the days after their son disappeared.

A Lakewood committeeman says they're overwhelmed, but relieved he had been found.

Having the burial the day after a death -- in this case a body being found -- is part of Jewish tradition.

Sofer's Body was discovered around 3:30 p.m. Israeli time on Thursday just a few kilometers from where he was last seen while hiking with a friend in the Jerusalem forest.

Sofer, who was one of 10 children, grew up in an Orthodox family in the Ocean County, New Jersey, town. He went to Jerusalem to study and was between semesters on Friday when he went hiking with a friend in the woods.

Former Lakewood Mayor Meir Lichtenstein said Sofer wasn't an experienced hiker.

"He actually called his mother and asked her permission," he said.

The community had held out hope that Sofer would be found, but his death ultimately brought the community together, said Lichtenstein.

Photo Credit: Family Photo]]>
<![CDATA[Woman Struck by 2 Cars Dies, Driver Flees]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 11:53:48 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/215*120/Logan+N+Broad+Street+Woman+sTruck.JPG

Philadelphia Police say a driver fled after sending a woman into the air along N Broad Street in the Logan section of the city. The woman later died in the hospital.

Accident invesitgators say a woman in her 50s was crossing Broad Street at Belfield Avenue around 5 a.m. when a compact white car struck her and sent her flying into the air and into the path of a second car.

Medics rushed the woman Einstein Hospital where she later died.

The small white car fled the scene. The other car stopped and the driver cooperated with investigators.

Police closed southbound lanes of the roadway as they investigated.

Surveillance cameras on a nearby church could help the investigation.

Photo Credit: NBC10.com]]>
<![CDATA[Officer Kills Himself Outside Police Station]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 11:05:00 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Lower-Providence-Parking-Lo.jpg

An on-duty veteran of a suburban Philadelphia police department took his own life outside the police station earlier this week.

Police Officer Mark Wells was found seated in his own vehicle parked outside the Lower Providence Township Municipal Complex on Parklane Drive in Eagleville, Pennsylvania Wednesday afternoon.

Lower Providence Township Police Chief Francis Carroll said Wells shot himself with a department-issued handgun shortly after 2:30 p.m. Wells was working the day shift at the time.

No one else was hurt during the incident.

In a release, Carroll said that Wells was a well-respected officer who began his career as a police dispatcher for the township in 1989. Wells was sworn in as an officer in 2000 and would go on to win the department's highest honor -- the Commendation of Valor.

"I had the distinct honor and pleasure of working with Mark throughout his entire career with the Lower Providence Township Police Department," said Carroll. "His commitment and dedication to Lower Providence Township was evident every single day. His love for being a police officer was only surpassed by his love of his family, particularly his wife, Shannon, and his daughter, Meghan, of whom no father was prouder of any child. This is an indescribable loss for Mark’s family, our department and our Township."

Carroll said that Montgomery County District Attorney's Office detectives would be conducting an investigation into Wells' death and the circumstances to led to him shooting himself.

SUICIDE PREVENTION: If you know someone who needs help, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by calling 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 10 Philadelphia

Photo Credit: NBC10.com]]>
<![CDATA[Fire-Damaged Old City Fire Station Reopens]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 08:17:42 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000007975717_1200x675_323095107839.jpg An opening ceremony will be held Friday morning for a fire station in Old City, Philadelphia that was closed after it was damaged in a fire.]]> <![CDATA[Philly Taco Makes 'Outrageous' Food List]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 11:46:29 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/160*160/fb6e20f82c7011e3b7ba22000aaa21618.jpg

Ever had a Philly taco? It's when you get a cheesesteak and then roll it up into a giant slice of pizza.

The creation is getting national attention from a CityPass list of outrageous foods around the country.

Now, there's not a place (that we know of) who will actually make the whole thing for you.

But this bizarre Frankenfood seems to be the brainchild of a few inebriated who patron South Street.



Philly.com's Michael Klein points out how it works. First, you go to Jim's Steaks and get a cheesesteak. Then you trudge a block down South to Lorenzo's pizza. Once there, order a jumbo plain slice.

Take the tapered end of the pizza, wrap it inside the steak, then roll and viola! you have the epitome of drunk food in your hands.


Photo Credit: level_13/Instagram]]>
<![CDATA[Big Rig Slams Into House]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 06:59:45 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/212*120/tractor+trailer+into+house+farnsworth+levick.jpg

A chain reaction crash started when an SUV ran a red light and ended when a tractor-trailer slammed into a home in Northeast Philadelphia Thursday night.

A gray Ford Expedition disregarded the traffic signal as it turned right onto Levick Street from Farnsworth Street in the city's Mayfair section around 7:15 p.m., according to police.

The SUV slammed into a big rig, which was heading westbound on Levick Street, officials said.

The force of the collision drove the truck across the intersection and into a house located at the corner of Levick and Farnsworth streets.

Luckily no one was home at the time of the crash. Both drivers were transported to Aria-Torresdale Hospital with undisclosed injuries.

Photo Credit: Manuel Noguera]]>
<![CDATA[In Case You Missed It: Yesterday's Top Stories]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 06:58:06 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/christie+bridge+state+of+the+state.jpg

Didn't have a chance to catch the news yesterday? Here are some of the top local stories you might have missed.

NJ Subpoenas Christie Phone Records in Bridge Jam Scandal
New Jersey lawmakers investigating the George Washington Bridge lane closures have subpoenaed AT&T for phone records of a top aide to Gov. Chris Christie.

Woman Found Dead in SUV Parked Outside New Jersey Wawa Was Trying to Rest: Police
A New Jersey woman struggling to make ends meet died in a sports utility vehicle parked outside a New Jersey Wawa store.

Joan Rivers "Resting Comfortably" at Hospital
Comedian Joan Rivers was taken to a Manhattan hospital after she stopped breathing while having minor throat surgery at a clinic in the city Thursday morning, multiple sources familiar with the situation say. 

Tractor-Trailer Slams into House
A chain reaction crash started when an SUV ran a red light and ended when a tractor-trailer slammed into a home in Northeast Philadelphia.

Man Kills Wife at Hospital and Turns Gun on Himself, Son Found Dead at Family's Home: Police
The son of a man believed to have shot and killed his wife before turning the gun on himself was found dead Wednesday at a South Jersey home. 

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Holiday Shopping Starts Now?]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 06:42:48 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000007976184_1200x675_323104835856.jpg Business leaders in Swedesboro, Gloucester County are already encouraging residents to shop locally in order to get ahead of the crazy shopping rush of Black Friday.]]> <![CDATA[Philly Preps for "Made in America"]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 06:48:51 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000007976102_1200x675_323105859579.jpg The Budweiser Made In America concert will bring tens of thousands of fans to the Ben Franklin Parkway throughout the weekend. NBC10's Jesse Gary reports with all the details.]]> <![CDATA[Philly Continues to Demolish Old Housing]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 05:53:01 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WCAU_000000007975797_1200x675_323098691620.jpg The Housing Authority met with residents Thursday night to discuss a new demolition set for Germantown in Philadelphia.]]> <![CDATA[Choking Victim Saved Aboard NJ Yacht]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 05:50:15 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/215*120/Coast+Guard+Cape+Bay+Yacht+Rescue.JPG

The United States Coast Guard came to the rescue of a choking victim aboard a yacht in the waters off New Jersey.

A woman aboard the Cape May-based 65-foot yacht Canyon Lady began to choke on her lunch Wednesday near Cape May Harbor.

The local Coast Guard came to the rescue after the crew called for help.

“Once we were on board, I established who the victim was and found the 61-year-old female laying in the recovery position,” said Chief Petty Officer Richard Fisher.

Fisher, an EMT, acted quickly.

“I administered 15 liters high-flow oxygen because she was still a little blue. Once we did that she was able to come around a little better, we were able to sit her up and she began talking.”

The unidentified woman refused further treatment.

Photo Credit: U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Nick Ameen]]>
<![CDATA[Cracked Eggs on the Highway]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 06:55:41 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/219*120/I76+Crash+Egg+Truck.JPG

A tractor-trailer hauling eggs crashed over a barricade causing traffic woes in both directions of a Philadelphia highway.

The big rig wrecked on the Schuylkill Expressway (Interstate 76) westbound right past the ramp from the Roosevelt Boulevard in the Wynnefield Heights section of the city around 1 a.m.

The tractor-trailer tipped over spilling eggs onto the highway. It also dangled over the City Avenue (route 1) ramp for eastbound traffic causing crews to close that ramp as well.

The driver walked away from the crash and was taken to Temple University Hospital with undisclosed injuries.

It took more than five hours to cleanup the wreck, which blocked traffic especially along Route 1 southbound.

Photo Credit: Traffic Camera]]>
<![CDATA[Murderer On Death Row Doesn't Appeal Sentence]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 06:30:09 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/michael_ballard.jpg Michael Ballard is scheduled to appear in court Friday for an appeal hearing in his murder case. The convicted killer has said he doesn't want to appeal the death sentence.

Photo Credit: NBCPhiladelphia]]>
<![CDATA[Stray Bullet Leads Police to Drug Bust]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 06:00:37 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/214*120/Kensington+Stray+Bullet.JPG

A shooting left a man hospitalized and three people in a nearby car struck by a stray bullet in trouble with the law.

Gunfire rang out shortly after midnight Friday along the 3300 block of Kensington Avenue in the Kensington section of Philadelphia.

A bullet struck a 33-year-old man in the knee. He was rushed to Temple University Hospital in stable condition.

Investigating officers went to check on three people inside a nearby parked car that was struck by a stray bullet.

Inside, police say they saw drugs and guns.

All three people in the car were arrested and face drug-related charges, according to police.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 10 Philadelphia

Photo Credit: NBC10.com]]>
<![CDATA[New Warning About Computer Virus Scam]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 10:40:53 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/WNBC_000000004751414_1200x675_322982467697.jpg As Lynda Baquero reports, scammers are calling people trying to get access to their personal information by fixing phony computer virus issues. Visit ic3.gov for more information.]]> <![CDATA[Gang Ties in Abduction, Double Homicide Case]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 01:03:49 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Schuylkill+River+Abduction+Police+Search.JPG

Police have narrowed their search for the suspects who killed two brothers -- slitting their throats before dumping their bodies in the Schuylkill River -- and critically injured another man over a $100,000 debt.

"We'll be coming to get you shortly," said Philadelphia Police. Capt. James Clark when asked if he had a message for the five people suspected in the abduction and double homicide.

Authorities learned of the barbaric crime Wednesday morning when the surviving victim, 23-year-old Thanh Voong, climbed from the banks of the Schuylkill River and began screaming for help around 4 a.m.

Hours earlier, the abductors were holding the three men -- who have ties to gangs and are well-known to authorities -- at a home on the 2400 block of 72nd Street, according to investigators.

The suspects were holding the brothers -- both in their late 20s and originally from Vietnam -- captive after they gambled away $100,000, which they were given to buy drugs, according to reports.

Voong showed up at the house with $40,000 to pay off the debt, but it was not enough to satisfy the suspects, sources said.

Early Wednesday morning, investigators found the bodies of the two brothers submerged in the water. Their throats were slit and both were bound with tape and tied to buckets.

Investigators removed similar buckets filled with roofing materials from the home on the 2400 block of 72nd Street Thursday.

Neighbors told NBC10 a woman and five children lived in the home. But they fled in an apparent rush since food was still on the stove when police arrived, according to reports.

Authorities also towed away an Audi A8 sedan Thursday as part of the investigation. They did not disclose how the vehicle,which was found on the 22nd Street overpass above the Vine Street Expressway, was related to the crime.

Police said they know who committed the crimes, but they are still searching for the suspects.

"They have obviously means, they have a lot of money, " Clark said. "They have a lot of different locations they've lived at through the years so right now we don't know where they're at or where they're headed."

As the investigation continues, Voong is recovering from seven stab wounds at Hahnemann University Hospital.

Photo Credit: NBC10.com]]>
MELISSA S. TREACY | THE ALTERNATIVE PRESS OF LOWER PROVIDENCE]]> <![CDATA[Private Donor Lights Up Pop Warner's Football Field]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 04:32:49 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/0624-2014-football-generic.jpg

The Methacton High School’s athletes may have to wait even longer for their lights. As Worcester Township, the municipality in which the high school is located, is currently holding a number of Conditional Use hearings to determine the allowance of the turf and lights at MHS, there was zero wait for a set of younger Warriors.

Despite the challenges in Worcester, the younger Methacton Warriors donning green jerseys and uniforms will be lucky enough to have lights by the end of this Labor Day weekend.

The Pop Warner organization, which provides youth cheerleading and football to the township for those ages 5 to 14, was granted approval for the lights at the field’s inception, when the initial lease was agreed to between the township of Lower Providence and the Warriors.

“Lights were on the blueprints when the plans were initially drafted,” said Tom Leahan, Methacton Warriors’ organizational president. “It was always a part of the envisioned project.”

The project was made possible through community partnerships, as one private donor made a contribution to pay for and install the lights.

“With a grant, we were able to finish the fields,” said Leahan. “But it was an anonymous donor that gave the money in what I believe is the last major improvement for us.”

Though the organization was trying to save each year, the cost of upkeep and operations made it difficult to raise enough for the lights.

“As far as fundraising, we’ve always tried to keep money aside, but we’re always fundraising for the full facility,” said Leahan. With the anonymous donor, the lights could finally be added.

Leahan said he looks forward to the new addition.

“From a safety perspective, it is a much safer environment for the children, because we don’t need the portable lights,” said Leahan. “There is also a cost savings to the organization for the rentals. That will pay for the usage.”

Bob Maro, the 80-pound football coach for the Methacton Warriors, said the new installation will save the Pop Warner league money when it comes to practice times.

“This will save the organization thousands of dollars in rental fees every year,” explained Maro. “They would rent lights in prior years.”

Now instead of truck-hauled rental lights, running loudly with fuel-eating fumes, the player will have permanent lights throughout the year. Practice times can be more flexible, and some teams will now be able to have evening games.

“I am not sure how many night games if any we will have, but this is very good news for the organization as a whole,” said Maro of his 80-pound players.

This story was published through a news content partnership between NBC10.com and The Alternative Press of Lower Providence

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Stranger Comforted 5-Year-Old Kidnapping Victim]]> Thu, 28 Aug 2014 20:42:50 -0400 Christina Regusters was arrested. and charged with the abduction and rape of the 5-year-old. ]]> Christina Regusters was arrested. and charged with the abduction and rape of the 5-year-old. ]]> http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/Christina_Regusters-MUG1.jpg

It was just another early morning for Nelson Mandela Myers as he walked from his Upper Darby home to 69th Street Station en route to his sanitation job.

But by daybreak, he would be hailed a hero for finding a missing girl and ensuring her safety until police arrived to reunite her with her mother.

It was 4:20 a.m. on Jan. 15, 2013. Myers was walking by the park at 69th and Ruskin Lane when he heard cries echo through the cold darkness.

“Help! Help! Help!”

Myers walked toward the voice and saw a little girl. She was shivering and barefoot, cowering under a swing set wearing only an oversized black T-shirt.

He lifted her up over the fence that separated them and enveloped her in his Under Armour hoodie to keep her warm. Moments later, holding her in his left arm, he called 911.

Myers recounted that morning in his testimony on Thursday during day four of the trial of Christina Regusters. The 21-year-old woman is accused of abducting the child from her elementary school and viciously raping her with a sharp object. Prosecutors say the victim -- only 5-years-old at the time -- was later dumped in the park.

“I’m hurt. I’m scared to find my way home,” the cold girl could be heard saying on a 911 recording played in a Philadelphia courtroom.

Nelson testified that the girl told him that somebody stole her. He described her condition as “dirty, shivering and cold” when he found her.

When he asked how she got to the park, the child sad she ran from South Philly. He knew that was likely not possible but offered her comfort and continued to talk with her.

Prosecutors ran through the rest of the morning with other first responders and police.

Paramedic Jonathan Serbin, who also took the stand on Thursday, took her vitals and made sure she was stable and that her heart rate was OK.

Serbin said he was concerned because he didn't know how long she had been out in the cold. She was taken by ambulance to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

There, she was cared for by doctor’s and nurses and interviewed for the first time by Kimberly Organ of the Philadelphia Police Department's Special Victims Unit.

Organ recalled from the witness stand that the child she met was quiet, still and timid, never raising her voice as she interviewed her.

The girl told Organ that she was with a teenage girl named China and that a man poked her with a toothpick in her private parts. Organ asked her if she ever saw the man. The child replied that she only saw a photo of him. The rest of the time, detectives believe she was blindfolded.

While she was held inside the home, the child said she was fed steak, broccoli, rice and apple juice.

Organ testified that the girl told her that China woke her up early in the morning and took her out of the house with plastic bags on her feet. They walked to the playground where she was told to scream for help.

Regusters denies the charges against her. Her attorney, Fred Harrison, expects his client to take the stand in her own defense next week.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 10 Philadelphia

Photo Credit: Philadelphia Police]]>
<![CDATA[Masked Men Steal $70K, Shoot Man Outside Supermarket]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 11:29:02 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/160*120/pathmark+citizens+bank+large+street+robbery+pic.jpg

Two masked men wearing Muslim garb waited more than an hour outside of a Northeast Philly grocery store Thursday so they could holdup a businessman who was heading to a bank to make a cash deposit.

The 37-year-old victim pulled in to the busy Pathmark parking lot at Large Street and Bleigh Avenue just after 6 p.m. to deposit $70,000 at the Citizens Bank branch located inside the supermarket, according to authorities.

As soon as he arrived, the suspects pulled their vehicle behind the man's car -- blocking him in the parking space, police said.

The armed robbers demand the man's cash and shot him in the right arm before taking off in a white Dodge Caravan with Pennsylvania tags, according to officials.

The gunfire caused a chaotic scene at the busy grocery store, which was filled with dozens of shoppers, according to police.

"All I seen was  people running into the store as the shots were fired," said Brian Amato, a Pathmark employee.

The suspects were last seen driving on Cottman Avenue.

The shooting victim was rushed to Aria-Torresdale Hospital in stable condition with a gunshot wound to his arm, according to police.

Police urge anyone with information on the robbery or the getaway vehicle to contact authorities.

Photo Credit: George Spencer]]>
<![CDATA[Revel Closing, But Homeowner's Property Fight Continues]]> Thu, 28 Aug 2014 20:00:45 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/0328179c98344ac8a7b229429193537a.jpg

The three-story brick house on a mostly deserted street in the shadow of the failed $2.4 billion Revel Hotel Casino was Charlie Birnbaum's father's livelihood. It allowed him to reside a couple of blocks from his beloved beach and earn income by renting out two floors to tenants.

"This building gave him dignity. It was his refuge," Birnbaum, 67, said this week. "As it was for my mom when my dad passed away. Because of this building, my dad didn't die in a nursing home."

Not even the killing of his mother there during a 1998 robbery diminished Birnbaum's beautiful memories of what the house meant for his family.

It's those memories that keep him from accepting a buyout from the state agency in charge of redeveloping Atlantic City as the resort city's casino industry shrinks. Even with the hulking glass structure down the street preparing to sit empty after Revel closes this weekend, the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority says it still wants to redevelop the nearby land where Birnbaum's house sits.

Birnbaum's lawyer and an attorney representing other tenants affected by the redevelopment plans met Thursday with a judge who is deciding whether the CRDA has the right to force them out through eminent domain. The judge heard arguments from both sides in May and scheduled another hearing for Oct. 6.

Though Birnbaum does not live at the house, he still goes there almost daily. He uses the first floor for his business tuning pianos played in the city's casinos, and to play the piano still in the living room, which is surrounded by pictures of his family.

"The building has been my refuge in a similar way," he said. "I've been able to continue making a living and doing what I do."

The building is one of a few inhabited properties that dot the landscape, surrounded by patches of grass and undeveloped lots with for-sale signs. His parents, Holocaust survivors, bought the house in 1969 when Birnbaum was in college, and he still rents out its two apartments.

Robert McNamara, an attorney representing Birnbaum from the Virginia-based Institute of Justice, said the CRDA doesn't have any concrete plans to redevelop the area and is out to "destroy Charlie's family home."

"They're just moving forward no matter what to create more vacant land in Atlantic City," McNamara said.

Elaine Zamansky, a spokeswoman for the redevelopment agency, said she couldn't comment on Birnbaum's case, but that the agency is "accumulating land that makes it attractive for developers to buy."

The opening of Revel two year ago had inspired plans for the surrounding South Inlet area, including a $75 million entertainment complex proposed by a group that includes former NBA star Shaquille O'Neal.

The CRDA had planned to use its share of revenue from Revel -- 1.25 percent of gambling winnings -- to pay for a $50 million bond to buy and clear several blocks. But Revel's struggles led the agency to use a more modest $8.5 million to remake the neighborhood.

Birnbaum, who lives 30 miles inland in Hammonton and has made a living by tuning pianos at the casinos for Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett and others, said he was offered fair market value for his family's house, about $240,000. He said he would leave if he was given a detailed reason on what the city wants to do with the land.

"I was hoping that my parents would see some turnaround and some progress, and now I'm hoping and praying that I'll be the one that sees the turnaround and progress in spite of Revel and in spite of Showboat and (Trump) Plaza, because we've gone through some tough times," he said. "And if it means going through more tough times, so be it."

<![CDATA[Philly Made $5M This Year from Litter: Controller]]> Thu, 28 Aug 2014 16:40:26 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/trash+generic2.jpg

Residents and businesses failing to properly dispose of their trash made the City of Philadelphia more than $5 million this year, according to a report by the city's controller.

Controller Alan Butkovitz said the city collected $5.08 million in trash fines during the 2014 fiscal year -- running from July 2013 to June 2014. That total is up 75 percent over six years ago when, in the 2009 fiscal year, only $2.9 million in fines were collected.

A typical littering fine is $150. The citations can be issued by police, building inspectors and Streets Department employees.

The Streets Department also has a special program called SWEEP, or Streets & Walkways Education and Enforcement Program, that sends staffers out to police littering issues -- primarily in the city's commercial districts, according to its website.

The city averages $425,000 in fines a month, according to the controller. Since 2009, Philly has made $26 million in littering revenue. But, Butkovitz says that's just a fraction of the money owed.

Revenue Department records show nearly $70 million is still owed, according to the controller. However, his office says, some of the fines are very old and officials feel most are uncollectable.

The trash cash that can be collected goes into the city's General Fund, which provides money for various services and projects.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 10 Philadelphia

<![CDATA[Surveillance Released from $87K Police Impersonator Robbery]]> Thu, 28 Aug 2014 14:52:58 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/213*120/police+impersonation+robbery.PNG

Detectives have released surveillance video showing police impersonators robbing hundreds of thousands of dollars from a Philadelphia food distributor.

The robbery took place at Kawa Trading along the 1700 block of Delaware Avenue in the Fishtown section of the city at 2 a.m. on Wednesday, police said.

In the video, the men, who were wearing hats that say "POLICE," can be seen getting out of an SUV and using a flashlight outside the facility's door. Investigators say they identified themselves as officers to get the two employees inside to let them in.

Once inside, the men, one of whom had a badge hanging from his neck, led the employees to the office at gunpoint. They forced the victims to lay on the ground as they stole $87,700 in cash. Police initially believed the men stole $100,000, but the amount was later revised.

The men then fled in a 1990s sports utility vehicle and remain at large.

The first suspect is described as 20-30 years old with a stocky build. He was wearing a light blue medical mask, white shirt and the police hat. The other man is in his mid-to-late 20s. He wore a black shirt and the baseball cap.

Anyone with information is asked to call Philadelphia Police at 215.686.TIPS.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 10 Philadelphia

Photo Credit: Philadelphia Police]]>
<![CDATA[Body of Missing NJ Student Found, ID'd by Parents: Sources]]> Fri, 29 Aug 2014 07:40:20 -0400 http://media.nbcphiladelphia.com/images/215*120/Missing+Yeshiva+Student+Aaron+Sofer.JPG

A body found on the outskirts of an Israeli forest has been identified as that of a New Jersey student who went missing nearly a week ago, police sources say. The remains were confirmed by his parents, sources say, who were holding out hope that the man was still alive.

The body of 23-year-old Aharon Sofer was discovered around 3:30 p.m. Israeli time on Thursday just a few kilometers from where the Lakewood, New Jersey, man was last seen while hiking with a friend in the Jerusalem forest.

There were no reasons to believe foul play was involved after the body was found, officials said. They believe the man may have slipped and fell while navigating difficult terrain.

The discovery came a day after emotional pleas from Sofer's family as they prayed for his safe return. Chulda and Moshe Sofer had flown from the U.S. to Israel over the weekend to join the search for their son.

"We believe he is still alive and out there," his mother, Chulda Sofer, said from Jerusalem after being briefed there by police.

"And if everyone could think of him as their own," she said, "we really beg everyone, and we plead with everyone, if anyone knows any lead to where Aaron is, if you could please contact the police immediately."

Sofer, who is one of 10 children, grew up in an ultra-Orthodox family in the Ocean County, New Jersey, town. He went to Jerusalem to study and was between semesters on Friday when he went hiking with a friend in the woods. The two got separated, and Sofer hadn't been seen since.

Former Lakewood Mayor Meir Lichtenstein said Sofer wasn't an experienced hiker.

"He actually called his mother and asked her permission," he said.

There were fears the yeshiva student may have been abducted due to the Israeli war in Gaza. But no group ever took credit for the disappearance.

As dictated by the Jewish faith, Sofer's body must be laid to rest within 24 hours. A family friend says the burial will take place at 9:30 a.m. Israeli time on Friday.

Audio from the service will be fed back to New Jersey so family members at home can take part.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC 10 Philadelphia

Photo Credit: Family Photo]]>