Woman’s body found in Penn­syl­va­nia woods was homi­cide vic­tim

The Mercury (Pottstown, PA) - - NEWS -

READ­ING, PA. » A Penn­syl­va­nia woman whose body was found dumped in some woods of a se­cluded road is a homi­cide vic­tim, though au­thor­i­ties aren’t say­ing pre­cisely how she died.

The body of 23-year-old Madi­son Walb was found Sun­day.

The Berks County coro­ner ruled her death a homi­cide Mon­day, but didn’t re­lease a cause of death be­cause some tox­i­col­ogy tests are pend­ing. Au­thor­i­ties re­leased her name Tues­day.

Berks County de­tec­tives were con­tin­u­ing to in­ves­ti­gate Wednesday.

Gover­nor: Penn­syl­va­nia’s top elec­tion of­fi­cial has re­signed

HAR­RIS­BURG, PA. » The gover­nor’s of­fice re­ports Penn­syl­va­nia’s chief elec­tion of­fi­cial has stepped down.

The Wolf ad­min­is­tra­tion said in a state­ment Wednesday that Sec­re­tary of State Pe­dro Cortes has sub­mit­ted his res­ig­na­tion, but gave no other in­for­ma­tion.

Cortes joined the ad­min­is­tra­tion in 2015. He had also served as sec­re­tary of state for over seven years un­der for­mer Gov. Ed Rendell, also a Democrat.

He’s be­ing re­placed by the agency’s top deputy, Robert Tor­res.

A mes­sage left at Cortes’ home seek­ing his com­ment was not im­me­di­ately re­turned.

Town­ship com­mis­sioner ar­rested on child porn charges

WAYNE, PA. » The pres­i­dent of a sub­ur­ban Philadelphia town­ship’s board of com­mis­sion­ers has been ar­rested on child porn charges after graphic sex­ual abuse im­ages in­volv­ing ba­bies and tod­dlers were found on his com­put­ers.

Philip Ahr sur­ren­dered to po­lice Wednesday on charges in­clud­ing pos­sess­ing and dis­sem­i­nat­ing child pornog­ra­phy and sex­ual abuse of chil­dren.

The Delaware County Dis­trict At­tor­ney’s of­fice says the 66-year-old Bryn Mawr man re­ceived and dis­trib­uted im­ages of chil­dren be­ing sex­u­ally abused by adults.

Pros­e­cu­tors say they be­gan in­ves­ti­gat­ing him in Au­gust after get­ting a tip a Ya­hoo Mes­sen­ger ac­count sub­scribed to Ahr was shar­ing child pornog­ra­phy.

A search of his com­put­ers found the im­ages.

A call to his lawyer seek­ing com­ment wasn’t im­me­di­ately re­turned.

Ahr is a mar­ket­ing direc­tor at a busi­ness pub­li­ca­tion and has been a Rad­nor com­mis­sioner since 2016.

Penn­syl­va­nia en­acts ‘right to try’ law for ter­mi­nally ill

HAR­RIS­BURG, PA. » Demo­cratic Gov. Tom Wolf is mak­ing Penn­syl­va­nia the 38th state to en­act a “right to try” law that gives the ter­mi­nally ill an av­enue to try ex­per­i­men­tal treat­ments that aren’t fully ap­proved by the fed­eral gov­ern­ment.

The law, signed Wednesday, al­lows a man­u­fac­turer of an in­ves­ti­ga­tional drug, bi­o­log­i­cal prod­uct or med­i­cal de­vice to pro­vide it to a pa­tient who has a rec­om­men­da­tion from a treat­ing physi­cian and has been un­able to par­tic­i­pate in a clin­i­cal trial.

The law doesn’t re­quire a man­u­fac­turer to pro­vide the treat­ment to a pa­tient, or grant le­gal im­mu­nity to the man­u­fac­turer. It also doesn’t re­quire an in­surer to cover the treat­ment or re­quire a man­u­fac­turer to pro­vide it for free.

It takes ef­fect in 60 days.

The lib­er­tar­ian Ari­zon­abased Gold­wa­ter In­sti­tute ad­vo­cates for “right to try” laws.

Man who spent year in church to avoid de­por­ta­tion walks free

PHILADELPHIA » A man who’d been liv­ing in a Philadelphia church for nearly a year to avoid de­por­ta­tion to Mex­ico has walked free.

Javier Flores Gar­cia left the Arch Street Methodist Church on Wednesday, sur­rounded by his fam­ily.

Gar­cia crossed into the U.S. with­out proper pa­per­work in 1997 and had been caught and re­turned to Mex­ico mul­ti­ple times.

In 2004, Gar­cia was stabbed and worked with the gov­ern­ment to cap­ture the men re­spon­si­ble. His ac­tions made him el­i­gi­ble for a spe­cial type of visa for peo­ple who help po­lice.

Gar­cia’s at­tor­ney says his client has been granted de­ferred ac­tion, which al­lows him to live and work in the coun­try.

Gar­cia took sanc­tu­ary in the church last Novem­ber, when he was to re­port for de­por­ta­tion. He says he plans to stay in Philadelphia.

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