News in brief: 12.1 Issue


Multiple cases The Temple News has previously reported on are currently in the pre-trial stages of the judicial system.

The preliminary hearing for 19-year-old Dimitrius Brown is set for Dec. 16 after it was previously scheduled for Nov. 25. Brown was arrested Oct. 16 for the murder of 14-year-old Duval DeShields. Brown also faces drug charges from August, and a pre-trial conference is set for Dec. 5.

Shakree Bennett’s preliminary hearing was scheduled for Jan. 7, after it was initially set for Oct. 29 and Nov. 19. Bennett, charged with the September rape and robbery of a 20-year-old female Temple student, also faces charges for an assault and robbery that occurred two days before the alleged sexual assault.

The pre-trial conference for Randolph Sanders has been set for Dec. 22. The first scheduled date for it was April 1, and most recent was Nov. 18. Sanders is charged for the murder of Kim Jones in January. Sanders is also accused of attempting to steal $40,000 from Turning Points for Children and is reported to have killed Jones because she intended to report him for trying to misallocate the money.

Brandon Meade was scheduled to appear in court for a formal arraignment Nov. 24 to enter a plea of guilty or not guilty. Meade is charged with the murder of Temple student Agatha Hall in August, which was originally thought to be a suicide. His case’s scheduling conference is set for Dec. 2.

No lawyers for the defendants or the Philadelphia District Attorney’s office could be reached for comment.

    -Julie Christie


Senior nursing students Molly Kmetz, Yanna Savkova, Brianna Reed, Jamie Fitzgerald, Kelly Weniger and Shane McParland have called themselves “The Flu Crew” at Temple Hospital, according to a university press release.

The six students distribute surveys on vaccine opinion and administer vaccines to staff.

Out of more than 4,100 TUH employees, 3,649 have received vaccines as of Nov. 23. The goal is to reach 90 percent flu vaccine compliance.

The team travels around the hospital with a cart of vaccine equipment to make the process more convenient for staff.

Free flu vaccination services have been extended to March 31.

The Flu Crew plans to submit the information from the distributed surveys to medical publications.

  Lian Parsons


SEPTA bus route 23 will be split into two starting Sunday.

The route runs for about 14 miles from Broad and Oregon streets through Center City, extending into North Philadelphia and Germantown, ending in Chestnut Hill. It is SEPTA’s most frequently used bus route and typically carries 21,600 passengers every weekday.

The new route 23 will run from Chestnut Hill to Walnut Street and an additional route 45 bus will transport passengers from Noble to Oregon streets.

This split aims to increase reliability and punctuality for the route, as the current 23 bus is late more than 60 percent of the time.

SEPTA spent about $42,000 on advertisements to inform passengers of the change.

The estimated cost of the split is about $460,00 per year.

Lian Parsons


Overcrowding has become an issue at Woodrow Wilson Middle School in Northeast Philadelphia after 350 students moved in from another school, the Daily News reported.

Teachers at the school, located on Cottman Avenue near Loretto in Castor said the influx of fifth- and sixth-grade students from Solis-Cohen School has endangered the safety of those at Woodrow Wilson.

“There are so many kids in the hallway at the same time, it’s unbelievable,” a teacher told the Daily News on condition of anonymity.

Philadelphia School District spokesman Fernando Gallard, however, told the Daily News there is no safety hazard because everyone is still able to exit the middle school during evacuations. He added that teachers should contact district officials with any concerns.

“If we have staff that have concerns regarding the fire drill and whether they can exit the building, we need to hear that,” he told the Daily News. “We will absolutely work with them on that. That’s absolutely a priority for us.”

The Daily News reported Wilson has undergone several recent changes to accommodate the overcrowding, from using its library as a classroom to having students share lockers.

-Steve Bohnel