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Explosion in Haddon Heights Apartment; Arlene Ackerman Funeral Services; Public Plea in Nailla Case
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 02/24/13 2:10 am | updated: 02/24/13 2:10 am
An explosion that rocked Haddon Heights, NJ this afternoon around 3:30 left only a shell of a house that had contained five apartments after it was engulfed in flames. All residents of the building have been accounted for and two people were taken to area hospitals with injuries. One victim was taken to Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center. Another was transported to Cooper University Hospital. The building is located at the corner of Green Street and White Horse Pike. Reports of a large explosion came in from around the borough and miles away. Many neighbors immediately came out of their homes to see the building partially collapsed, helping several residents escape before the structure went up in flames, quickly burning down. The building, which was converted to rental units, was up to code according to records. Investigators do not yet know the cause of the explosion.

UPDATE: Investigators have determined that the explosion was likely due to a natural gas leak. They do not believe it was set off intentionally. The investigation is ongoing.

Video from Haddon Heights explosion scene (

Funeral services have been set for former Philadelphia School District Superintendent Arlene Ackerman. Ackerman led the school district from June 2008 and left in August 2011. She died on February, 2nd 2013 in Albuquerque, NM where she lived after after a short battle with pancreatic cancer. There will be memorials in both Philadelphia and New Mexico. The Philadelphia service will be held on March 3, 2013 at 3 p.m. at the Bright Hope Baptist Church, located at 1601 North 12th Street.

SEE ALSO: Arlene Ackerman Passed Away at 66

The investigation into the abduction of 5-year-old Nailla Robinson on January 14th from her West Philadelphia kindergarten classroom at Bryant Elementary has made strides in the past week with the arrest of 19-year-old Christina Regusters. Regusters is charged with kidnapping, conspiracy, aggravated assault, rape, and related offenses and held on $4 million bail. Her preliminary hearing is scheduled for March 6th. Special Victims Unit investigators were able to track down the suspect from an anonymous tip and information from the young girl. Police have already questioned and released other members of her family that live in her household, however, they do not believe that she acted alone. They still are asking for the public's help in this case.

District Attorney Seth Williams said, “This is a plea to all concerned Philadelphians that may know more about what happened on that tragic day when the 5-year-old was kidnapped from Bryant Elementary School at 60th and Cedar. Other people saw things other people know. If there is anyone who has any information they can call 215-686-TIPS.” There is an $80,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest and conviction in the case.

SEE ALSO: Christina Regusters Arrested Nailla Robertson Case
SEE ALSO: Four Taken Into Custody in Nailla Robinson Kidnapping case

SEE ALSO: Amber Alert! 5-year-old Nailla Robinson taken from West Philadelphia school, $10,000 reward for info
SEE ALSO: Kidnapped Nailla Robinson Has Been Found Safe and Sound
SEE ALSO: Good Samaritan Receives Reward, School District Protocols Questioned
SEE ALSO: Police Search for Nailla's Kidnappers
SEE ALSO: Muslim Comm. Searches W. Philly
SEE ALSO: Reward $75,000 in Child Abductor Case
SEE ALSO: New Person of Interest Nailla Robinson
SEE ALSO: Community Rallies in Cobbs Creek
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