A witness in the trial of a former suburban Philadelphia police officer charged with sexual assault says the man’s DNA was found on the alleged victim. Former Bensalem police Sgt. Michael Marren is on trial in Bucks County Court. Prosecutors say he forced himself on a woman inside a bathroom at the township paramedic headquarters after a night of drinking. A DNA analyst from the National Medical Services laboratory says Marren’s DNA was found on the woman’s breasts. Another witness said the woman had injuries that suggested she was sexually assaulted. Investigators say Marren assaulted the woman March 9 after a night out to mourn a colleague’s death. He was fired from his job as the head of the department’s sex crimes unit after his arrest.
Police arrested a 27-year-old Gary man who, after spending the entire day drinking, tried to choke his 3-year-old namesake because the boy didn’t want to go to him, court records state. Courtney N. Davis, a resident of Dorie Miller Housing Development, was arrested Wednesday night by Patrolmen Shanesha Emmons and John Street who went to his home and found signs of a struggle throughout the apartment, and marks on Davis’ 16-year-old stepdaughter and his son, Courtney Davis Jr.
Davis was charged with five counts of neglect of a dependent, one count of felony battery and four counts of misdemeanor battery. He is being held at Lake County Jail on $100,000 bond. His stepdaughter told Detective Willie Ervin she was caring for the toddler, cooking him some dinner and putting his pajamas on, when the boy’s father called for him, the affidavit states.
Davis “kept hollering for Courtney Jr. to come to him but Courtney Jr. would not do so,” the affidavit states.
The girl took the toddler to her room, but Davis came in and pushed and punched her. He forced her 11-year-old sister out into the cold with no coat or shoes and started choking his son, police said. The 16-year-old told police the child cried, “Stop, Daddy,” while his father choked him. The girl ran to a neighbor’s home for help, and when the neighbor arrived, she saw Davis lying on top of his son threatening to kill him. The boy’s mother told police she was at work all day and she believed Davis had been drinking since 8 a.m. and “she believes he also snorts something.” She returned home about 6 p.m. and found water on the kitchen floor, a phone pulled out of the wall and furniture moved.
Police have arrested two men from Philadelphia and have charged them with robbing a man as he returned home to Cinnaminson from Atlantic City. 22 year old Christopher Featherstone and David Riley, age 20, are behind bars in Philadelphia, but will be extradited to New Jersey to face charges of robbery, aggravated assault and a number of gun charges. Both allegedly beat and robbed a man who hit it big at the Sugarhouse Casino in Philadelphia and took a cab back to Cinnaminson.
Police have arrested two men for allegedly beating up an Imam in a racially fueled attack on a Lower Manhattan subway train. Investigators said the two men accosted the 49-year-old victim as they all rode the northbound A train at 3:35 a.m. Wednesday morning. For unknown reasons, the men started using anti-Muslim names and slurs. The verbal abuse then turned physical, police said, with the two men, who were apparently strangers to each other, ganging up on the Imam. The fight spilled onto the Canal Street station platform, and the Imam was pushed to the ground. He suffered minor bruises, but refused medical attention. Police arrested 30-year-old Albert Melendez of Harlem and 28-year-old Eddie Crespo of Staten Island. They are charged with assault as a hate crime and related offenses.
Three days after a 15-year-old LaPlace girl was found beaten to death in her bedroom, a 27-year-old neighbor has been apprehended and will be booked with her murder, St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff Wayne L. Jones said Wednesday. Authorities say Earnest Joseph, III, who lived down the street from Taylor Adams, beat her to death early Sunday morning after an intense struggle inside the house. Jones said Wednesday that Adams and Joseph knew each other. However, authorities would not describe a motive for the killing. Jones said tips from the community led them to Joseph as a possible suspect, but he would not say what evidence they have that ties Joseph to the scene.
“Taylor certainly offered resistance, there was a great struggle inside the residence,” Jones said during a news conference on Wednesday. “We have in our possession the murder weapon as well as some other forensic evidence that has been transported to the Louisiana State Police crime lab.”
During a 3 p.m. news conference in LaPlace, the Sheriff’s Office identified Joseph as a suspect and said he was on the run. About an hour later, news broke that Joseph had been arrested about 3 p.m. in Gulfport, Miss., with the help of the U.S. Marshals Service. St. John investigators were en route to Gulfport late Wednesday and expect to bring Joseph back to LaPlace, possibly as soon as Thursday. Jones said Joseph tried to contact a girlfriend Sunday and that authorities knew he was “trying to gather some belongings and get out of town.” However, he said Joseph’s family is cooperating with the investigation.
“I know the Joseph family, they’re good people,” Jones said. “This subject is acting on his own.”
Jones said that Joseph has a “violent” past and has been arrested several times, including for allegedly shooting his brother after an argument over clothing. However, Jones could not say whether Joseph has been convicted of a crime. “He’s a little person by stature, but does have a violent streak in him,” Jones said. Authorities say Adams’ mother, Gaylyn Adams, found her daughter’s bloodied body in the girl’s bedroom shortly before 6:30 a.m. Sunday and called 911. Investigators say the woman last spoke to her daughter around 9 p.m. Saturday and that she expected her daughter to be home alone. The mother worked as a security guard for a private security company in LaPlace and often worked a 12-hour shift.
Authorities have said they think Taylor Adams was killed sometime after 1 a.m., but would not say what evidence lead them to that conclusion. St. John Parish Coroner Dr. Christy Montegut has said preliminary autopsy results confirmed what investigators say they found at the scene, that Adams died from “blunt force trauma to the head.” Montegut said the autopsy, which was performed Monday, indicated that Adams sustained several severe blows to the head which resulted in a fractured skull and jaw and bleeding on her brain. Montegut has said the examination couldn’t determine what caused the trauma, whether it was someone’s fists or another object.
Adams was a sophomore at Riverside Academy in Reserve and friends are planning a candlelight memorial in her memory today. She was the fourth homicide victim in St. John this year. Wednesday evening, as word spread that a suspect had been named and then later arrested, friends of the Adams’ family dropped cards and flowers at a memorial on their doorstep. Melvin Sandle brought a wreath to lay among the other flowers, balloons and teddy bears. Sandle said he worked security details with Adams’ mother, whom he described as a “wonderful lady.” Other neighbors said they are still shocked by the tragedy, but are relieved that an arrest has been made.