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Man Convicted of Murder of Samantha Josephson; Arrest in Delco Fuel Spill; Worker Dies in Collapse
 
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 07/28/21 2:06 am | updated: 07/28/21 2:06 am
 
A South Carolina man was convicted on Tuesday, 7/27, of killing a 21-year-old college student from New Jersey after she got into his car, mistaking it for an Uber ride. Nathaniel Rowland was found guilty of murder and kidnapping Samantha Josephson of Robbinsville, New Jersey in March 2019. Josephson was a student at the University of South Carolina at the time. She had disappeared from Columbia, SC's, Five Points entertainment district. Josephson was waiting for an Uber to go home when Rowland pulled up. She got into his car thinking it was her ride. Once inside, she was trapped because the child locks were engaged. Her body was found 65 miles away from Columbia in a wooded area of Clarendon County. She had been stabbed 120 times. Prosecutors presented a mountain of forensic evidence tying Rowland to the crime during trial. He faces life without parole at sentencing.

"Sami's Law" was passed in NJ and contains several provisions to make using ride sharing safer. A version has also passed in the US House. Josephson had been accepted to the Kline School of Law at Drexel University. She was expected to return to the Philadelphia area after graduation to continue her studies.

SEE ALSO: NJ Student Killed in South Carolina

A New Jersey truck driver has been arrested and charged with eight felony counts and two misdemeanors in connection with last month's fuel spill in Delaware County. 36-year-old George Smith of Vineland is charged with causing and risking a catastrophe, Clean Streams Law violations, and related offenses. It happened on June 11 at the Gas N Go at Coebourn Boulevard and Edgmont Avenue in Brookhaven. Records show that Smith filled up his tanker with 8,500 gallons of gasoline at the depot. He was supposed to make 4 stops that day. Brookhaven was supposed to be the last stop, but he went there first. Another tanker had been there earlier in the day and Smith could only fit 4,500 gallons in their underground tank. He didn't want to have to make an extra trip to refill his tanker to complete the other stops, so he decided to just dump the remaining 4,000 gallons of gas he was carrying. Surveillance footage shows he left the fuel hose next to a guardrail. Gas poured down an embankment and into the woods causing an environmental disaster.

"We have determined that the defendant's deliberate actions caused this fuel discharge," Delaware County District Attorney Jack Stollsteimer said in a statement. "As a fuel delivery driver, the defendant was entrusted with a hazardous product - gasoline - and he owed a duty of care to all of us. He chose self-interest over the safety of the Brookhaven community and the safety of the children at Coebourn Elementary School. One of my first actions as District Attorney was to establish an Environmental Crimes Unit, and this prosecution should send a message that we will pursue and prosecute those who commit crimes against our environment."

"The environmental impact was immediate and observable with dead wild life - a dead fox, fishes, and eels - in and around the vicinity of the fuel discharge. To date, over 100 large trucks of contaminated soil have been excavated and removed from the site," authorities said. "Additional efforts to remediate, including testing and treating the ground water, could take years."

SEE ALSO: Fuel Spill Closes Delco Elementary
SEE ALSO: Fuel Spill Criminal Probe
SEE ALSO: Fuel Spill in Delco

A construction worker was killed in an accident on Tuesday morning, 7/27, near the site of a future Amazon warehouse in North Philadelphia. It happened before 11 a.m. on the 700 block of Ramona Avenue in Feltonville. The 29-year-old man was buried after the ground gave out beneath him following a partial wall collapse. Crews used heavy machinery to rescue him from the pit. He was taken to Temple University Hospital where he died from his injuries. The cause of the collapse is under investigation.

 
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