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Public Corruption in Chester County, PA

I believe an unlikely mix of alleged drug trafficking related politicos and alleged white nationalist related politicos united to elect the infamous “Bloc of Four” in the abysmal voter turnout election of 2005. During their four year term the drug business was good again and white nationalists used Coatesville as an example on white supremacist websites like “Stormfront”. Strong community organization and support from law enforcement, in particular Chester County District Attorney Joseph W. Carroll has begun to turn our community around. The Chester County drug trafficking that I believe centers on Coatesville continues and I believe we still have public officials in place that profit from the drug sales. But the people here are amazing and continue to work against the odds to make Coatesville a good place to live.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Hoping for gentrification

Fortunately it didn't happen. New York became one of the safest cities on earth.
Inequality and the City
"New York, New York, a helluva town. The rents are up, but the crime rate is down. The food is better than ever, and the cultural scene is vibrant. Truly, it’s a golden age for the town I recently moved to — if you can afford the housing. But more and more people can’t. 
And it’s not just New York. The days when dystopian images of urban decline were pervasive in popular culture — remember the movie “Escape from New York”? — are long past. The story for many of our iconic cities is, instead, one of gentrification, a process that’s obvious to the naked eye, and increasingly visible in the data. 
Specifically, urban America reached an inflection point around 15 years ago: after decades of decline, central cities began getting richer, more educated, and, yes, whiter. Today our urban cores are providing ever more amenities, but largely to a very affluent minority. 
But why is this happening? And is there any way to spread the benefits of our urban renaissance more widely? 
Let’s start by admitting that one important factor has surely been the dramatic decline in crime rates. For those of us who remember the 1970s, New York in 2015 is so safe it’s surreal. And the truth is that nobody really knows why that happened. 
But there have been other drivers of the change: above all, the national-level surge in inequality.” 
More at: 
New York Times 
Inequality and the City 
NOV. 30, 2015
Paul Krugman

Coatesville is one of the smallest municipalities in Chester County, but it doesn't need to stay small.

Coatesville is a 3rd class city. But don’t let the city part of City of Coatesville make you think that is anything other than a small village. 

Our population is about 13,000. Our water and sewer can support 20,000 people without modification.

There is no building height limit for the flats, the former steel company brownfeilds. 

Bart Blatstein proposed a 20 story office and condominium building for the flats. Mr. Blatstein proposed an upper level restaurant with a view of the rolling hills of Chester County.

The redevelopment of Coatesville is part of the plan to preserve those rolling hills of Chester County from suburban sprawl. See, Chester County Landscapes. Former Coatesville resident Pat Sellers and his John Birch Society think "Chester County Landscapes for developers, municipalities and others to promote sustainable living practices" is part of a United Nations Agenda 21 plot to take our guns away and put us in concentration camps, see: If you lived in Coatesville in the early 21st Century you are a casualty of the “war on environment” but that's another story.

The same kind of thing that happened in New York City would happen in Coatesville. 

Paul Krugman wrote that low crime rates contributed to New York City’s rebirth. I think the crime rates came down at the same time higher income people decided to live in New York.

People worry about gentrification in Coatesville. Gentrification worries in a small town surrounded by fox hunting billionaires, come on. 

We might not have billionaires moving to Coatesville as in New York, that is within the City limits. We already have a billionaire living in the Coatesville Area School District just outside of the city limits.

Finish the train station and bring SEPTA here along with Amtrak and many people living in Coatesville can work in Philadelphia or New York City. And not get in a car to get there.

Newcomer eyes on the street will and are reporting crimes here. 

The new people moving into Coatesville will most likely not have long time family members living in Coatesville. 

Our city is kind of unique compared to most municipalities in the United States. Many people living here, including my self, have family going back 100 years or more living in Coatesville. That's’ very nice. There is something near to 100 Pitcherella family members living in and near Coatesville, I lost count. But there is a downside. If a drug dealer here is murdered and the murderer knows where all your family members live, it’s easy for him to threaten you.

It’s not that long established people don’t report crimes, they do, but they take an extremely high risk. They don’t just risk their own life, they risk their family member’s lives, little Sicily. 

Monday, November 23, 2015

Coatesville’s Lincoln Highway Human Obstacle Course.

Here in Coatesville every day maybe, hundreds of times a day, people walk in front of moving traffic without ever looking. Sometimes they’re staring at a smart phone. Most of the time they looking straight ahead like they’re walking on farmland. 

It’s one thing to time traffic so you can cross. Not bothering to ever look at traffic when crossing the street is another thing. 

They have no “street smarts”. 

If they lived in Germantown or Mt. Airy in Philadelphia they wouldn’t last long. In Germantown and Mt. Airy speed limits are partly followed. In a 25 mph area the speeds could be anything from 25 to 70 mph. You really have to look at traffic and time your street crossing to survive. 

It’s safer to cross the street in downtown Philadelphia. There’s a kind of code between moving traffic and walkers. You give a little, they give a little. 

Here in Coatesville many people don’t bother looking. The only thing that saves them is that people mostly follow the speed limit and can stop quickly, or drive the obstacle course. 

On Lincoln Highway in Coatesville the obstacle course isn’t marked by traffic cones. The obstacle course here is moving pedestrians. It’s really disturbing when the obstacle course is children crossing with their mothers into moving traffic. 

We put bump outs at crosswalks to shorten the crossing distance and crossing time for pedestrians. 

The traffic signals are state of the art camera controlled signals. The signals actually count the number of cars waiting at a red light and change long enough for those cars to move. Most of the signals are camera controlled. A few are timer controlled. 

The timer controlled intersections are at 1st Avenue, 3rd Avenue and 8th Avenue. I’m not sure if Strode Avenue is timer or camera controlled. 

Stopping traffic makes breaks in traffic along Lincoln Highway so that pedestrians can cross. Otherwise on very heavy traffic times there would be an unbroken line of vehicular traffic from one end of Coatesville to the other. 

The entire traffic signal system can be controlled remotely if necessary. 

When the firetrucks and ambulances activate the traffic signals they don’t turn all signals to red.  It depends on which direction the emergency vehicles are headed, how fast and where they are.  State of the art. It helps keep the under 10 minutes response time. 

When traffic is very light you can drive through Coatesville from bridge to bridge and maybe stop at 1 or 3 traffic signals. That’s 17 intersections. 

It’s not like New York, NY. The “Walk” buttons really do work and you don’t have to wait long for traffic to stop.

But many people don’t bother crossing at cross walks. 

Many people walk between traffic moving both ways anywhere along Lincoln Highway in Coatesville and don’t bother looking. This is on a roadway designed to favor pedestrians and not automobile traffic. But the pedestrians need to show some good sense for it all to work.



Saturday, November 21, 2015

Since Prohibition Chester County organized crime has been Republican. It could change to Democrat

Since Prohibition times organized crime in Coatesville and in Chester County has been Republican Party based. 

Chester County is slowly changing to a Democratic County. Organized crime will change along with the politics. 

Don't misunderstand, Chester County organized crime won’t ever go completely over to the Democratic side. Philadelphia is a Democratic County but organized crime is mixed between mostly Republican organized crime in South Philly, Northwest Philly and North East Philly and mostly Democratic organized crime in Center City, North Philly and West Philly. Philly began changing to Democratic in 1949.

Up until very recently organized crime, the drug business part, has been entirely Republican in Chester County. If organized crime needed help from public officials Democrats couldn’t help. The Republican Party controlled everything. But politics is slowly becoming more Democratic in Chester County. 

I think that in Coatesville a small change in organized crime politics, in the drug business, is beginning. The CCDC, the Chester County Democratic Committee needs to be cognizant of this.

The wild card in all of this is legalization of marijuana and possible legalization of all drugs now on the narcotics list. If that happens it will destroy organized crime as it now exists. Legalization will also take money out of West Chester, PA and the Chester County Courts system.  See:

I think there have been changes in illegal drug distribution in preparation for legalization of marijuana. Mexican drug entrepreneurs are switching to Mexican processed very high grade heroin and they're delivering it almost like Amazon does. From Mexico to your doorstep. That kind of delivery system doesn’t need motorcycle gangs in South East PA and street slingers in Coatesville. Maybe some of the drug business in Coatesville dried up because of the new Mexican Smack. Maybe that’s the reason we see more armed robberies here. I don’t know yet. 

I published this: 

MONDAY, JULY 6, 2009

The two basic political entities are those who are go along with the drug traffickers and those who are working against the drug traffickers. It does not matter whether they are Democrats or Republicans; the big differences in politicians here is whether they go along with the drug scene or not. One caveat to keep in mind is that there are many naïves who do not understand how things work here.

There is a separate underground economy that operates on trickle down money from drug trafficking in Coatesville. When the undercover ATF and DEA people were here because of the arson, much of the drug trafficking stopped. The legitimate local business here suffered; some people did not have the cash to their pay bills.

There is no long standing drug trafficking business anywhere that does not have support from public officials. Read; Police Politics Corruption “The mixture dangerous to freedom and justice” by Colonel Frank McKetta Retired Pennsylvania State Police.

On the surface Coatesville seems like an ordinary Pennsylvania town. But a drive down any main street on a Friday or Saturday night will tell you that this is a huge drug trafficking town. It is a beautiful town with great potential and wonderful people but one that is held hostage by long time drug traffickers with political connections. I call it “Little Sicily”.

If a shooting occurs in front of several people in Coatesville right now; chances are “nobody saw it”. Much of the tips that law enforcement does get in Coatesville comes from new residents. Coatesville is a city of about 12,000 residents with the infrastructure for 20,000 residents. New residents without long time family connections in Coatesville cannot be easily intimidated by drug traffickers. The USDoJ is well aware that a redevelopment of Coatesville that brings in new people may be the end of the drug trafficking and the terror hold that it has over Coatesville. The drug traffickers are also aware of that fact.

Election of people not connected to the drug trafficking political establishment here will help but what I think Coatesville and Chester County really needs is a full investigation of the city by the USDoJ. Until that happens we will continue to see articles like this one in the Daily Local News:

The Daily Local (dailylocal.com), Serving Chester County, PA
'How do you sleep at night?'

Along with most other older Daily Local articles this one is difficult to find. But the same article appears in the DelCo Times:

Monday, July 6, 2009
One year ago, two Chester County families were destroyed and a community was sent into a state of shock.

Anti-government militias & white supremacy has been mainstream Republican for some time.

Muslim databases and 'rabid dogs': Trump, Carson and GOP in explosion of rhetoric over Syrians 
The race for the Republican nomination for the White House took a new turn in the aftermath of the Paris terrorist attacks on Thursday as the front-runner, Donald Trump, called for a database to track Muslims living in the United States, while his closest rival, Ben Carson, suggested refugees of the Syrian conflict should be screened as they might be “rabid dogs”.

This is not a “new turn”. 

The white supremacy rhetoric coming from main stream Republicans took political journalists by surprise. But those of us who monitor right wing terrorists knew it was coming. We could see right wing extremism in the local Republican Party. We could see right wing extremism in Pennsylvania Republican Party politics. It’s been coming for at least a decade. 

Many people don't want to accept that the GOP has become white supremacist anti-government militia political party.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Does Ronny Suber think these Kevin Dougherty posters will let him work as a Constable?

Will Ronny bring a “companion reader” with him to take the tests for Pennsylvania State Constable?

Will Ronny ask the PA Supreme Court for an exemption from the test?

Why did the Pennsylvania State Police deny Suber’s request for a liquor license for his bar at Lincoln Highway and Strode Avenue?

Will Ronny ever serve in any capacity in the election he won in Coatesville’s Fifth Ward?  

Will someone read all this for Ronny?

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Hiring Veterans

When I worked in a dental laboratory a German company designed and furnished our workspace. 

We used German dental equipment. 

The cost of the benches & equipment was much higher but the primary expense of dental laboratories is their employees. 

It all allowed us to make a superior product in less time and in the long run for less expense and, not incidentally, a higher salary for me, our owner and the other 3 employees. 

The German companies were looking for U.S. citizens to work in their U.S. affiliates. They hired U.S. veterans, especially U.S. veterans who served in Germany. 

What the German companies got were employees who had excellent leadership abilities and people who could think on their feet. 

Hire a veteran. 

Monday, November 9, 2015

Hummelstown, PA-PD Officer Tasered & shot and killed unarmed man for expired inspection sticker. She wants her job back.


"Donna Trostle, who works in downtown Hummelstown, said Thursday that some people wouldn't feel safe if Mearkle returned. Rita Russ, a 74-year-old woman who lives just outside the borough, said she would lose faith in the police department."...

"On Feb. 2, Kassick, 59 of South Hanover Township, fled from Mearkle, 37, as she attempted to pull him over for an expired inspection sticker. Mearkle, who shocked Kassick with a Taser then shot him twice, said she acted in self-defense. Kassick was later found to be unarmed."


on November 09, 2015 at 1:45 PM, updated November 09, 2015 at 2:00 PM



Sunday, November 8, 2015


Lucy and Ethel on the "I Love Lucy Show" were always getting into trouble with some scheme they cooked up. 

Coatesville City Council President Linda Lavender Norris and her friends are much like “Lucy”. Except that there is no “RICKY!” to call when something goes terribly wrong.

But Lucy and Ricky didn’t live in a town that had murders. 
The “I Love Lucy” show was real good comedy.
The “I Love Linda” show is a real life horror show.
Come on over to the “I Love Linda Show” to see Linda and her zany friends live on stage in their hilarious scheme to remove Ed Simpson from the Coatesville City Council. Once Ed is gone the audience will double up in laughter when they try to fire Chief Laufer and Detective Thompson. It’s a laugh a minute.  

Does Coatesville City Council President Linda Lavender Norris want Coatesville PD Chief Laufer fired?
Is the undercurrent pushing the people running as write in candidates for Coatesville City Council part of an effort to fire Coatesville PD Chief Laufer and Detective Thompson?

It's Deja Vu All Over Again!

Back in 2005 after the persons who were to become the "Bloc of Four" Coatesville City Council candidates won in the Primary Elections in 2005, I began warning that if they won in the General Elections of 2005 Richard Legree would try to control the Coatesville PD.

Now it's "BACK TO THE FUTURE" time as Linda and her zany friends try to take control of the Coatesville PD!

This story is no longer online. The Chester County Reporter is no longer online.

Chester County Reporter 
Story filed 10 January 06  
Coatesville residents turnout to support Krack, Bellizzie  
By Allen Davis  
Staff Writer 
9 a.m., 10 Jan 06 
Coatesville residents crowded into City Hall last night wanting to know if there was truth to reports that City Manager Jean Krack and Police Chief Dominic Bellizzie are to be replaced in the near future.  
"I don't respond to rumors," council President Kareem Johnson said. Johnson would comment only that last night was the first time he had heard council was considering creating a new superintendent of safety position that would oversee the police.  
Lt. Matt Gordon specifically asked whether rumors were true that Richard Legree, a constable and former Valley police officer, was to be named superintendent of safety.  
"This is the first time I heard that," Johnson responded. 
Council members Marty Eggleston and Ed Simpson both said last night they had no problem showing public support for both Krack and Bellizzie.  
Fifteen off-duty police officers, all in uniform, turned out last night to show their support for Bellizzie whom has been credited with ridding the streets of open-air drug markets and professionalizing the 32-man department.  
Bellizzie was also supported by the Coatesville NAACP. "Chief Bellizzie is my buddy. I don't want anybody messing with him," said Louise Hopkins, president of the Coatesville NAACP. Bellizzie, who is white, is the first city police chief to meet regularly with the NAACP over such issues as profiling. 
"Without Jean Krack and his people (staff), you're going to set the city back five years," said Elwood Dixon, a Caln resident but who owns property in Coatesville.  
Ricky Saha urged the new council members to work with Krack and his staff. "I called Krack and said I was going to do anything I could to keep him and others on," said Saha. ] 
Ricky Saha is the son of Dick Saha who waged a six-year legal and political battle to force the city to halt the city from using its eminent domain powers to take his Valley Township farm for a golf course.  
Johnson said all new council members are 100 percent for the city's revitalization and he looked forward to working with the three council members remaining from last year's council. ". . . but we're going to move forward," he said.  
Added council Vice President Robin Scott: "There is going to be change . . . and some people are scared of change."  
Johnson, Scott, Patsy Ray and Kurt Schenk were all elected in November. The four defeated incumbents David Griffith, Bill Chertok, Carmen Green and David DeSimone.  
Last night Schenk implored residents to give the new council members a chance.  
"Before you listen to rumors, give us a call . . . Please give us a chance," he said.________________________________________You can write to Allen Davis at allen@chestercountyreporter.com

We gave Schenk a chance:

Several people from Coatesville, including me, went to Senator Casey's office in Philadelphia to implore him to come to Coatesville and see the devastation from the fires in person. He came.

String Of Fires Has Pennsylvania Town On Edge

by Joel Rose


District Attorney Joe Carroll said that Lt. Matt Gordon is one of the most knowledgeable investigators of drug trafficking and the individuals involved in Chester County. I believe that when Walker and Matthews took him out of operation it was a cause for celebration among Chester County drug traffickers. 

At the about same time Matthews proposed laying off at least 6 officers, eliminating the Detective Division and Narcotics Division. After the police began leaving the Coatesville PD there was an almost immediate reaction by the local drug traffickers; gunshots were heard here almost every day. I received word that drug dealers from Philly moved into Coatesville. The word was “business is good again in C’ville”. 

I believe that plans to eliminate Lieutenant Gordon were in operation well before Matthews started in Coatesville. I think that Richard Legree planned to step into the Coatesville PD as a Lieutenant and considering Gordon's importance in the prosecution of drug trafficking I think it was killing two birds with one stone. I think the plan was; after Legree was a police Lieutenant for some time Matthews would retire and Legree would be Chief of the Coatesville PD. I believe that a plan B was for Legree to run for Coatesville District Court.

This is part of one of the news records concerning the hiring of Matthews:

From the Daily Local News Friday, October 3, 2008:


POSTED: 10/03/08, 12:01 AM EDT |

“The motivation behind Matthews' decision to place Gordon on inactive duty becomes murkier when applying information from a Philadelphia police officer who competed with Matthews for the Coatesville chief position.

Following the appointment of Matthews, Philadelphia Lt. Joel Fitzgerald said the city offered him the chief position and the city drafted a contract.

During the interview process, Fitzgerald said City Manager Harry Walker and prominent resident Richard Legree informed him that, as chief, he would need to fire one of the city's two lieutenants. Fitzgerald never identified the lieutenant.

Fitzgerald said that when he made clear he wanted complete control over department staffing, the city passed on Fitzgerald and instead hired Matthews.

The city has denied any wrongdoing.”


Friday, November 6, 2015

Does Coatesville City Council President Linda Lavender Norris want Coatesville PD Chief Laufer fired?

Is the undercurrent pushing the people running as write in candidates for Coatesville City Council part of an effort to fire Coatesville PD Chief Laufer and Detective Thompson?

Does Coatesville City Council President Linda Lavender Norris believe that Coatesville Police planted weapons on and near Andre Emmet “Needles” Fiorentino? That Andre Fiorentino was unarmed when two Coatesville, Pennsylvania, police officers opened fire on him? Or is Ms. Norris on a power trip?

For Linda Lavender Norris to fire Detective Thompson, Chief Laufer needs to go first. Chief Laufer will not fire Detective Thompson. 

But before that could happen a majority of Coatesville City Council needs to agree to fire Chief Laufer. That can't happen unless at least 2 incumbent council persons are not re-elected and are replaced with "Thompson Must Go" city council members. 

In Tuesday's Elections 1st. Ward Coatesville City Council Member Ed Simpson and 3rd. Ward Coatesville City Council Member Arvilla Hunt were up for re-election. 

I believe that Mr. Simpson and Ms. Hunt would not go along with firing Chief Laufer or Detective Thompson. 

Enter Lillie Lavender for Coatesville City Council 3rd Ward candidate and Cheryl Taggart for Coatesville City Council 1st. Ward. 

Think it can't happen? 

Keep in mind that the City of Coatesville has already canned or forced out City Manager Kerby Hudson, Public Works Director Don Wilkinson and Codes Officer Damalier Molina. All three had major shouting match disagreements with City Council President Linda Lavender Norris. 

As far as Andre Fiorentino’s story that he was unarmed this is how his mother responded:
“Asked whether or not her son was armed, Jeanie responded, ‘I don’t know if he had a gun. There was a little gun in the street. I seen the police officer kick the gun away from Andre and then another officer came from the opposite side to pick up the gun.”

My take on this is that the evidence against Andre Fiorentino is overwhelming and all the stuff that is happening in Coatesville is creating false hope and more suffering for everyone involved. And that the political ambition and political power of the narcissistic, Machiavellian, psychopath who is the Coatesville City Council President is leaching on the compassion for black men trapped by racism and poverty.  That's my opinion. Make up your own mind. But please don't depend on 2nd, 3rd, & 4th hand "whisper down the lane" "facts". 

What interests me from the article just below is this comment from "James". Who is the “Old Head”?

“And he wasn’t looking in car windows? Who’s the old head that he got in a fight with a few nights prior? Who called Needles to tell him that the Old Head was sitting in the car down the street? This animal was out hunting and got what he deserved. 
Live by the gun, die by the gun. Don’t blame the cops cause your brother got caught.”

Dispatches from the Underclass
by Rania Khalek on December 26, 2013

Andre Fiorentino, 32, says he was unarmed when two Coatesville, Pennsylvania, police officers opened fire on him last month outside his home. He was struck several times and nearly bled out while shackled face down on the ground in front of his mother and 14-year-old son.

Just one day after the incident, the authorities determined that the shooting was justified based on police claims that Fiorentino was armed with two guns and shot at them twice, prompting officers to return fire. Fiorentino has since been charged with attempted murder of two police officers.

But his family isn’t buying it.

Fiorentino’s sister, Arden Hunt, contacted me a few weeks ago about her brother’s case. 
She pointed to several holes in the police narrative about what took place that night and expressed dismay at the authorities for spending less than 24 hours investigating the incident.

“They justified the shooting within 24 hours without talking to my brother,” Hunt told me. 

“He couldn’t even speak. He was in an induced coma.”

On November 24, one day after Fiorentino was shot, Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan announced that the investigation into the incident was complete and that the shooting was deemed justified. He praised the officers and portrayed Fiorentino as a career criminal who deserved what he got.

“Given the defendant’s conduct, the defendant was lucky he was not killed and Chester County is lucky that two police officers are not dead,” Hogan said in a statement. “In Chester County, we will not permit our police officers to be targeted. It will be a long time before this defendant sees blue sky again.”…

Shackled and Bleeding out

Fiorentino’s mother, Jeanie, was asleep in her bed when she awoke to 8 loud rapid-fire gunshots.

“When I came outside, the police officer had a gun pointed at my son’s head,” she told me, adding that he was face down, shackled and bleeding profusely at the time.
I was crying and screaming, ‘Oh my God, you shot my son!’ Then one of the policemen said, ‘Get the F— back’ and he told the other officer to handcuff me. My son was saying, ‘Mama, I’m okay.’ Then he said it again, a little softer. He could barely talk.”

She added, “I don’t think they called the ambulance. Someone in my house did.”

Fiorentino’s 14-year-old son was at the house that night as well. Upon hearing gunshots, he ran outside to the porch and was the first to see his father handcuffed and bloody. Jeanie is concerned that her grandson has been traumatized by what he witnessed. “I know that can do a lot to a kid because I see what it did to me,” she said. “I still see the whole thing right outside my window when I’m sleeping in my bed.”
Asked whether or not her son was armed, Jeanie responded, “I don’t know if he had a gun. There was a little gun in the street. I seen the police officer kick the gun away from Andre and then another officer came from the opposite side to pick up the gun.”

However, she does not believe her son shot at the officers, especially since the gunshots she heard were rapid and successive, meaning they came from the same gun.

As for the gun that was found on his clothing during transport to the hospital, Jeanie was skeptical. “They wouldn’t let me go to the hospital with him. I cried and begged. They sent a woman police officer with him.”

Hunt also expressed suspicion at the idea that a gun would be found on her brother after police would have undoubtedly frisked him.
The family has since hired a lawyer and plans to push back against police claims…

Fiorentino’s preliminary hearing has been scheduled for January 28.
UPDATE: Paul Hetznecker, Andre Fiorentino’s attorney, tells me that it is “unheard of” for a police shooting investigation as serious as this one to be settled within 24 hours.

“I am shocked that any major police shooting in any jurisdiction would resolve in such a short period of time. It calls into question the methods and results of the investigation conducted by the Chester County authorities,” says Hetznecker…

Bob #
The investigation was so quick because the evidence was so overwhelming against the armed felon. He is a known violent felon. His family will try to get a payday out of this but I strongly encourage the county to fight them till the end so they get nothing (except for the welfare they’ve collected for years). I applaud the aggressive police officers for risking their lives to make this notoriously dangerous city a little safer…

pinbalwyz #
It’s hard to tell in a swearing contest from here. If the jury is presented with ballistics evidence where the police recover the alleged bullets fired by the young black man, they may well convict him. They should be looking for his fingerprints on the 2 guns allegedly in the defendants possession and the bullets fired for ballistics. If all that lines up pointing to the defendant, he’d have a lot of explaining to do. Self defense (he fired after they opened fire on him) might be a persuasive explanation but for the fact it’s too late since the defendant claimed he had no gun at all. Sometimes (almost always) it’s better to keep your mouth shut. By opening his, he eliminated a number of potential defense strategies. On the other hand, perhaps there are no fingerprints and incriminating ballistics/bullets in evidence?

James #
The writer of this needs to follow up with the “young black men in Coatesville’s poorest neighborhoods” who have thanked the police department for getting Fiorentino off the street. Needles is an animal; not a human, and should be kept in a cage. His mother produced one son who is in jail for life for murder, this animal who, with 2 prior convictions for armed robbery, is running around with 2 stolen guns and shooting at police. And he wasn’t looking in car windows? Who’s the old head that he got in a fight with a few nights prior? Who called Needles to tell him that the Old Head was sitting in the car down the street? This animal was out hunting and got what he deserved.
Live by the gun, die by the gun. Don’t blame the cops cause your brother got caught…

Dispatches from the Underclass
by Rania Khalek on December 26, 2013

Daily Local News 

WEST CHESTER >> Before sentencing the man convicted of firing gunshots at two Coatesville police officers to a prison term that could keep him behind bars well into his old age, a Common Pleas Court judge on Thursday bemoaned how the defendant had smeared the city as well as threatened the lives of the officers.

“You have repeatedly let down the community,” Judge Patrick Carmody told Andre Emmet “Needles” Fiorentino as a standing-room courtroom filled with city police officers and members of the Chester County District Attorney’s Office sat and listened. “You have been in and out of jail like it’s a revolving door.”

“I have a great respect for the citizens of Coatesville,” Carmody said in his 15-minute long lecture to Fiorentino. “I think it gets a bad rap … because of the actions of a few.” He said that evidence showed Fiorentino chose to leave his home and his family the night of the shooting and “put the people who live and work in that city in danger.”

Reciting Fiorentino’s criminal history dating back to his teenage years, Carmody said the defendant was someone who could not control his impulse to commit violent crimes, mainly armed robbery. “You have had a number of chances and you’ve tossed them aside to go out and terrorize the community. We can’t tolerate people shooting at police.”

Calling Coatesville police the “soldiers on the home front” who protect the community, Carmody said that Fiorentino had by firing at them during a street stop in November 2013, “made the community a dangerous place. That is a crying shame.”

Carmody sentenced Fiorentino, 34, of Coatesville to 25 to 50 years in state prison, on the charges of felony aggravated assault on police officers and three weapons charges. He said he had tailored the sentence so that Fiorentino would “no longer be a threat to society” when he is freed.

Both of the officers that Fiorentino was found guilty of firing the revolver was illegally carrying spoke at the hour-long sentencing hearing in the county Justice Center. Detective Joseph Thompson and Officer Ryan Corcoran asked Carmody to sentence Fiorentino to the maximum term allowable, which was 35 to 70 years. They said the events of the night they were attacked had had a long lasting impact on their lives and careers.

“I will relive that night for all the time I work in Coatesville,” said Thompson, who said that as a longtime officer he had been in life-or-death situations previously but none that compared to Fiorentino’s attack. He said he felt Fiorentino had tried to make him the villain in the case rather than the victim, and had “played the system” to get a monetary reward.

“I want the defendant, and any other criminal to think twice before they attempt to shoot another officer,” Thompson told Carmody.

Corcoran, who had only served a few weeks as an officer in Coatesville when the shooting occurred, told the judge he had never dreamed he would be involved in an attack such as Fiorentino’s. “I had hoped that I would never have to use my weapon,” said the military veteran of wars in the Middle East. “But I felt like I was in a fight for my life.”

He urged Carmody to sentence Fiorentino to a lengthy sentence “to let other officers know that the judicial process will always be there for them.”

The case pitted the prosecution’s contention that Fiorentino had fired multiple shots at the two officers after they attempted to stop and question him as he walked along a street in the city’s East End, with the defense’s claim that the officers had overreacted and fired at Fiorentino without justification, mistaking a cell phone he had pulled from a pocket for a weapon.

The jury that heard the case during a week-long trial in June rejected the defense suggestion and found Fiorentino guilty on various counts of aggravated assault and weapons offenses. Carmody, in his comment before imposing the prison term on Fiorentino, said he considered the evidence against Fiorentino — including taped telephone conversations from Chester County Prison in which he implicated himself in the crime — overwhelming.


Man gets 25-50 years for shooting at Coatesville policemen

By Michael P. Rellahan,

WEST CHESTER >> The attorney for a Coatesville man who was shot by city police after he allegedly drew a weapon and fired at them will not be permitted to question one of the two officers about a prior shooting he was involved in on I-95, a Common Pleas Court judge has ruled.

Judge Patrick Carmody, in a five-page order signed last week, granted the motion by the prosecution in the case of Andre Emmett “Needles” Fiorentino to bar defense attorney Paul J. Hetznecker of Philadelphia from asking now-Detective Joseph Thompson about the 2008 police shooting in Delaware County in which he was involved.

Hetznecker had signaled that he wanted to cross-examine Thompson about the shooting in order to attack his credibility and show that he had “a powerful and compelling motive to lie about the circumstances of the shooting in this case,” according to a brief Hetznecker filed in support of his efforts.

The prosecution, led by Deputy District Attorney Thomas Ost-Prisco, had countered that asking Thompson about the shooting, which happened five years before the shooting involving Fiorentino, would be improper character evidence of “prior bad acts” under the state’s rules of evidence.

Hetznecker argues that “because Detective Thompson used force in the apprehension of suspects in the past, in what (he) has labeled an unconstitutional manner, that Detective Thompson must have done the same in this case,” Ost-Prisco wrote. That, he said, was expressly prohibited by state rules.

Carmody agreed with the prosecution.

“The 2008 incident is wholly unrelated to the present matter,” he wrote in his decision, signed June 8. “Detective Thompson is not under investigation for the 2008 incident. He has been cleared of any wrongdoing and has never been disciplined as a result of the incident.

Further, the judge wrote, Thompson, who was hired as a part-time patrol officer in August 2013 and promoted to full time following the city shooting, subsequently becoming a detective, “does not need to ingratiate himself to his superiors by obtaining a conviction because the prior matter is closed, the investigation occurred years before (Fiorentino’s) trial is scheduled to begin, and it was resolved in Detective Thompson’s favor.”

Evidence of the 2008 shooting is “collateral” and “irrelevant,” Carmody wrote. He also precluded Hetznecker from asking Thompson about other cases in which the officer was involved in Coatesville arrests that drew negative scrutiny from Common Pleas judges in the county, including Carmody himself.

“We do not want this trial distracted into challenging Detective Thompson’s career rather than what happened in this case,” the judge wrote.

“The court notes that this was a difficult decision,” Carmody, however, commented. Even though he agreed with the prosecution that there was no connection between the 2008 and 2013 shootings, he said he would give Hetznecker leeway to question Thompson “extensively” about the circumstances surrounding Fiorentino’s shooting and arrest.

“This includes the propriety of the initial stop of the defendant (and) the facts and circumstances surrounding Detective Thompson’s status as a part-time officer at the time ... and his subsequent promotion to a full time officer a short time later,” Carmody said…

The Chester County District Attorney’s Office, after an investigation of the incident by police in the hours after it occurred, determined that the shooting was justified because Fiorentino had fired at the officers first and they were protecting themselves.

The 2008 incident involved a traffic stop that Thompson made while he was serving as a trooper with the Pennsylvania State Police, patrolling I-95 in Delaware County.

While questioning the driver of the car, Thompson said he thought he saw a gun under the coat of a passenger in the car. Thompson pulled his Taser on the passenger, who, according to Hetznecker’s brief, allegedly reached for the weapon, saying, “I’m just going to give it to you.” Thompson pulled his own weapon and shot the man in the leg.

The driver jumped back in the car and sped away, dragging Thompson from the scene.

The shooting occurred on Dec. 14, 2008. An investigation began, and on Feb. 10, 2009, Thompson, a 16-year-veteran of the state police, submitted a letter of resignation, effective March 6, 2009. On April 23, 2009, six weeks after his retirement, Thompson was cleared of the I-95 shooting.

“Needless to say, the timing of Thompson’s retirement, and the circumstances, raise strong suspicions about his departure from a job that likely paid him well over $100,000 a year with overtime,” the defense attorney wrote.


Daily Local News
By Michael P. Rellahan,