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Second suspect named in murder of community advocate Winnie Harris

Posted on 13 October 2017

        Winnie Harris

Police have issued an arrest warrant for a second suspect in the murder of well-known community advocate Winnie Harris.

Isaiah Reels, 30, is wanted in connection to the February 2017 murder. Earlier this week, police announced the arrest of 39-year-old Nelson Giddings, who was already in police custody in Delaware County on unrelated charges. Giddings has been charged with murder, robbery and weapons offenses.

Police say Giddings and Reels broke into Harris’s home late on Feb. 2 and shot her when she confronted them. Harris, 65, was found in her home on the 300 block of North Holly Street the following day.  Continue Reading

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University City’s Jamie Gauthier takes charge at Fairmount Park Conservancy

Posted on 11 October 2017

                   Jamie Gauthier

Jamie Gauthier, a Garden Court resident, has been named the executive director of the Fairmount Park Conservancy. The organization made the decision on September 13 and announced it on October 9. She had been acting director for several months.

She first joined the Conservancy, a nonprofit that promotes and improves Philadelphia’s parks in conjunction with the city, in January 2017. Prior to that, she had directed Philadelphia’s Sustainable Business Network (SBN), which she described as a kind of chamber of commerce for socially conscious businesses. While at SBN, she became drawn to “Rebuild,” City Hall’s $500 million program to revitalize neighborhoods. That eventually compelled her to leave SBN and join the Conservancy.

“Rebuild is the biggest neighborhood-centered initiative I can recall, so I had to be involved in it,” she said. “So that’s why I ended up leaving SBN, so that I could help the Conservancy connect to Rebuild in some way.”  Continue Reading

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Suspect in custody in connection to murder of West Philly activist Winnie Harris

Posted on 09 October 2017

Winnie Harris (center) during MLK Day of Service in January 2017 (Photo courtesy of UC Green).

Police say they have a suspect in custody in connection to the murder of West Philly activist Winnie Harris, who was found shot to death inside her home on the 300 block of North Holly Street on February 3, 2017. The suspect was arrested on Friday while in detention for another, unrelated matter, according to police. Charges against the suspect are pending. More details about the suspect have not been released as of Monday afternoon.

Harris, 65, was a longtime Powelton resident and green space advocate. She worked as the executive director of West Philadelphia based nonprofit UC Green at the time of her death.

In May, police released and distributed a flyer asking for the public’s help with information on two persons of interest in relation to the murder.

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Philly lawyer wants to sue door-to-door energy co.’s for unfair price hikes

Posted on 02 October 2017

We’ve previously reported on energy companies that go door-to-door in West Philly to market PECO alternatives that allegedly save you money. Now, a Philadelphia law firm wants to take some of them to court, arguing that they deceive their customers by charging low rates in the first few months and then raising fees.

In August, the firm Kohn, Swift & Graf announced they are looking for customers to join a class action lawsuit. The firm specializes in class action, and they have already sued some of the companies involved in other states, like Just Energy in New York and Direct Energy in Illinois. In the latter case, KS&G argues that the Direct Energy is “luring consumers into switching energy suppliers with false promises.” The firm has previously reached a settlement with Pennsylvania Gas & Electric in a similar case.  Continue Reading

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Capogiro Gelato to close University City location

Posted on 29 September 2017

Photos via Capogiro’s Facebook page.

The popular Italian frozen treat shop, Capogiro Gelato, is closing its location on the 3900 block of Walnut Street after eight years of operation. Philly Mag broke the news early Thursday afternoon and a few hours later, Capogiro posted the following message on their Facebook page:

It is sad but true – this Saturday is the last night the neon will be all lit up. It has been a wonderful 8 years scooping for the University City community and we want to thank you for your support!

So, hurry up and get a scoop or two before the Penn’s campus location at 3925 Walnut St. closes on Saturday, Sept. 30, at midnight. Or check out Capogiro’s other locations in the city.

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Mariposa introduces food discount program, increases wages

Posted on 26 September 2017

Mariposa, the cooperative grocery store at 49th and Baltimore, has implemented two initiatives aimed at making a positive contribution to the neighborhood: On September 20, it announced a 10 percent discount program for qualifying low-income shoppers, and back in August it raised its minimum salary from $10.75 to $13 per hour.

The 10 percent discount emerged from a sense among Mariposa’s leadership that many of the store’s products aren’t accessible to all its neighbors. Hillary Wickline, Mariposa’s marketing coordinator, said the organization knows that even with government assistance, healthy food can be out of reach.

“We just want to make sure that we’re creating a welcoming space within this environment and not serving just a group of people with a steady income of, like, $50,000 a year or something like that,” Wickline said.  Continue Reading

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