DAILY GRINDER: Priest May Have ‘Stalked’ Kid

A former Catholic High School student testified yesterday that Rev. Francis Trauger, who allegedly was shipped to several churches in part of the vast Philadelphia priest cover-up currently being tried in court, stalked him as a teenager. Trauger is not on trial, but the story is being used to show Monsignor Lynn, who is on trial, covered up the incidents.

Speaking at the Hyatt at Bellevue Hotel yesterday, former Mayor and Governor Ed Rendell called for measures to “redefine charity” so cities can collect more income for localities from nonprofits, like colleges and hospitals.

Rick Santorum leads Mitt Romney in the Pennsylvania presidential primary by 30 percent to 28 percent. That’s a different story than February, when he led 45-16. So Romney’s riding high. So high, in fact, he claimed, during a conference call with Republican voters last night that President Barack Obama was “doing Russia’s bidding” in telling that country’s president that he’d have more “flexibility” with which to deal with nuclear proliferation after the November election.

Obama has explained the comments, which many on the right have found controversial. “I think everybody understands … that I want to reduce nuclear stockpiles,” Obama said. “And one of the barriers to doing that is building trust and cooperation around missile-defense issues. And so this is not a matter of hiding the ball.” Although, that’s not good enough for many Republicans.

The striking SEPTA Transit Police put out a press release earlier this week claiming since their strike began, crimes have increased at SEPTA stations and in vehicles, so hurry up and meet their demands! SEPTA spokesman Richard Maloney says that’s a bunch of baloney. “This deliberate fearmongering by the FOTP’s hired PR representative, distributing grossly distorted crime statistics to the media, is a disservice to the officers of the SEPTA Transit Police and Philadelphia Police,” he said. The FOTP made mention of 20 crimes. Maloney said only four of them actually happened on SEPTA property. Negotiations continue today.

A murder occurred in Nicetown-Tioga with two copper thieves were allegedly approached by a gunman who…wanted their copper wire. The gunman remains at large.

The Pennsylvania District Attorneys Association says George Zimmerman, the gunman in the Trayvon Martin case in Sanford, Florida, would have been arrested if that happened here. Pennsylvania’s stand-your-ground law, known as the Castle Doctrine, requires the perpetrator to be armed and dangerous, which Martin was not.

Fifty stolen bicycles were found on West Lehigh Avenue in North Philadelphia when police broke up a dogfighting ring.

The Senate has passed a bill by a 48-0 margin, which allows domestic wines be shipped to our front doors.

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