Friday, May 13, 2016

The Roundup

Keith Smith 
A weekly tab of what's
going on in the courts.

By Shealyn Kilroy
For BigTrial.net


Chester County District Attorney:

A Chester County man has been charged with murdering his girlfriend who recorded her  own death on her cell phone,  the District Attorney’s office disclosed on May 11th. 

On May 2, Keith Smith got into an argument with girlfriend Wesley Webb in their home in Schuylkill County. Three children under the age of 14 live at their home and were upstairs during the argument. Webb told Smith she was going to take the two children and leave the house. Smith then took his single-shot 12 gauge shotgun and shot Webb in the chest while she was seated in the living room. Smith turned the gun on himself and fired, but he did not succeed at killing himself. The children came down the steps after the shots and dialed 911.

Authorities say Webb’s phone was recording the audio of her killing and continued recording up until police arrived.


“Fuck you! How’s that. That’s where we just went,” Smith says on the recording after the shooting, according to authorities.


“This was a savage, selfish, and cowardly murder,” Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan said in the press release. The defendant did not hesitate to kill his girlfriend. But he flinched when it came to killing himself. Now, the victim is dead, the defendant is alive, and three kids have been badly traumatized.”

Smith told police that he shot Webb and attempted to kill himself. Smith is charged with first degree murder, third degree murder, possessing an instrument of crime, and endangering the welfare of children. Smith is ineligible for bail and will be transported to prison once he’s cleared to leave the hospital.

Pennsylvania Attorney General:
A judge in Berks County has been charged for stealing over $100,000, the Attorney General’s office announced on May 12th. 


District judge Timothy M. Dougherty, 56, who had the authority over the court’s finances, allegedly stole $15,251 from his court in Wyomissing. Investigators executed a search warrant on Dougherty’s court in October, and 20 days after he told investigators he didn’t have the money, he made a single deposit to the court for $15,251. Dougherty was also subpoenaed to testify to a grand jury about the missing money the day after the deposit was made.

In addition to being charged with stealing from his court, Dougherty allegedly stole $97,780 over a period of seven years while serving as treasurer for the Wyomissing Volunteer Fire Company. A forensic accountant reviewed Dougherty’s finances and found that Dougherty’s accounts were overdrawn, that he failed to pay his monthly bills, and that he could not pay his mortgage. 


Dougherty is charged with five counts of theft by deception, two counts each of theft by unlawful taking and theft by receiving stolen property and one count each of theft by failure to make required disposition of funds and conflict of interest.

U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania:
 
Real or fake SEPTA pass?
Photo by BillyPenn
A former Philly 311 worker pleaded guilty May 9th to charges relating to selling over 2,000 fake SEPTA TransPasses, according to the U.S. Attorney office. 


Between August 2013 and June 2014, Mark Cooper, 35, bought a $91 legitimate pass and then copied the magnetic stripe onto cards using equipment bought on the internet, according to CBS. 

Co-conspirator Kimberly Adams sold the passes for $50 to customers around City Hall. Most of the customers were City of Philadelphia employees. 

Adams pleaded guilty in August 2015 and is scheduled to be sentenced later this month. Cooper faces a maximum of 20 years in prison, a fine of up to $500,000, four years of supervised release, and a $200 special assessment. Cooper is scheduled to be sentenced Aug. 4th

Philadelphia District Attorney:
 
Antuane Brown
Convicted rapist Antuane Brown was sentenced on May 9th to decades in prison, according to the District Attorney’s office. 


During the spring of 2013, Brown, 25, raped four teenage girls in separate incidences at gunpoint in the Germantown section of Philadelphia during the spring of 2013. Brown will face to up to 196 years for these attacks, which he entered a no-contest guilty plea for in October.

In the first attack in March 2013, Brown, wearing a mask,  approached a 12-year-old victim while she was waiting for the bus. Brown dragged her into an alley, where he raped and sodomized her. Brown threatened the girl that if she called the police, he’d kill her family.


 All four attacks happened a block from Brown’s home.

Shealyn can be contacted at shealyn@bigtrial.net.

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