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Elevator Accident at Philadelphia CJC; Joey Merlino Arrested in FL; School District Testing Water
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 08/04/16 9:39 pm | updated: 08/04/16 9:39 pm
An accident involving two elevators injured two people at the Philadelphia Criminal Justice Center this morning. Around 10:30 a.m., a loud 'explosion' shook the 17-story building at 13th and Filbert in Center City. The CJC was evacuated as a precaution and all court cases were postponed for the day. Authorities discovered that an employee elevator suffered a structural failure and broke through the ceiling of the shaft. That sent debris falling down the adjoining shaft onto another elevator below. 49-year-old Sgt. Paul Owens of the Sheriff's Department was in the first elevator and suffered broken bones in his back. He was rushed to Hahnemann University Hospital in critical condition and underwent surgery. Court clerk Beverly Smith was in the second elevator and suffered minor injuries. The elevators were last inspected by the state on June 14, 2016. They are investigating the cause of the crash.

Reputed former Philadelphia mob boss 'Skinny' Joey Merlino was arrested today in Florida along with dozens of other suspected mobsters as part of a federal racketeering indictment targeting the East Coast. 46 members of La Cosa Nostra were named in the indictment and charged with extortion, loansharking, casino-style gambling, sports gambling, credit card fraud and health care fraud. Merlino's name is connected to sports gambling businesses as well as a health care fraud scheme in the indictment. The syndicate operated in New York, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Florida and comprised members of several families. Merlino spent 12 years in federal prison for racketeering. He has been living in Florida since his release in 2011.

The School District of Philadelphia will be retesting drinking water in schools for lead levels. Samples will be taken from 40 schools to ensure they comply with current EPA and Philadelphia Department of Public Health standards. It is part of the district's Safe Drinking Water Program. They will test four schools a week for 10 weeks. Lab tests, analysis, follow-up, repairs, and remediation may take an additional 6 weeks. The school district last tested the water in 2010.

Clear skies, temperatures in the low 80s/upper 70s this evening in Center City

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