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The Post  
Norristown Carnival Brawl on Video; Officer Dragged, Suspect Shot; Charges in Frankford Death
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 05/14/19 4:38 am | updated: 05/14/19 4:38 am
An investigation is ongoing after a brawl broke out on Saturday night, 5/11, between dozens of teens at a church carnival in Norristown. It happened around 8:30 p.m. at the Saint Francis Spring Carnival. Officers responded to a report of a fight involving more than 50 kids on the last night of the four-day festival. Cell phone footage shows two officers trying to detain one girl while holding back the crowd. It appears that an officer had a teen girl in a chokehold before pinning her on the ground. A second officer holds out pepper spray to disperse the crowd, but didn't actually spray. "The crowd ignored all orders by the police and continued to fight. Officers reported being kicked, shoved, and punched and were forced to call for assistance from several surrounding departments," Norristown Chief of Police Mark Talbot said. Police made several arrests. On Monday, 5/13, about 100 students marched to call out police brutality. Talbot says that the department is investigating how his officers handled the matter.

A courtesy traffic stop near Temple University ended after an officer was dragged and a suspect was shot on Saturday night, 5/11. It happened around 10:50 p.m. near Broad and Norris Streets in North Philadelphia. Two highway patrol officers pulled over a black Toyota sedan because it had a flat tire. One officer approached the vehicle and noticed the smell of marijuana. He also noticed a gun in the suspect's waistband. The suspect started to drive away and dragged the officer a few feet up the block. He crashed into a nearby SEPTA Police vehicle. The second highway officer caught up to the suspect. During a struggle, the suspect was shot in the forearm. He got out a ran, but was caught by a responding officer in a nearby alley. The gun was also recovered nearby. The suspect was taken to Temple University Hospital to be treated for the gunshot wound. An officer in the SEPTA vehicle was taken to the hospital to be treated for non life-threatening injuries. The officer that was dragged suffered minor cuts and bruises and is expected to be ok.

Two people have been arrested and charged in connection to the death of a 70-year-old man whose severely beaten body was found in a plastic bin inside his home. 25-year-old Andrew Ciaccia and 21-year-old Vanessa Pena have been charged with tampering with evidence, obstructing justice, abuse of a corpse, and criminal conspiracy. They were taken into custody on Friday, 5/10. Family members of Robert Derer reported him missing on Thursday, 5/9, after not hearing from him for a few days. Police found him in a large storage bin in a row home on the 1600 block of Fillmore in Frankford. Derer had only been staying at that location for about a month. The other residents are all in their 20s. No one has been charged with homicide at this time. The investigation continues.

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