cold case curiosity in chester county

A friend of mine sent me a link to a news story today.  It was a reprint of a Daily Local article from 1964 :

#TBT: Grave of missing child found, 1964 murder which shook Chester County

POSTED: 03/30/17, 8:17 AM EDT

Editor’s Note: This story is from the Nov. 30, 1964 issue of the Daily Local archives.

Connie Evans was found dead yesterday afternoon.

The West Goshen Township girl’s body was discovered by a Berwyn man, out for a walk, in a shallow grave just south of Chester and Berkley roads in Easton Township.

Police said the indications were the child was strangled….

Investigators said that the girl may have been slain shortly after she was last seen on Oct. 24. That was five weeks and one day ago.

The girl’s grave was about one mile southeast of the Easttown Township police headquarters, a mile directly south of Rt. 30 and a half mile north of Sugartown Road.

It was on the estate of Theodore K. Warner Jr. , a member of the township’s board of supervisors.

The girl’s mother, who lives in a tenant house on the Jerrehian estate, just above Rt. 29 and the West Chester bypass, was visited by Sgt. Francis Kofke of the West Goshen Township police force, last night….The girl’s grave was about 150 yards south of the supervisor’s home, near a large pine tree and in a fairly open area,” according to an investigator….The grave was 36 feet in from Berkley Road, at one side of a seldom-used path which is entered through posts of a wooden gate. A wooden fence which had stretched for some distance on either side of the gate has rotted away, and most of it is on the ground….Connie had left home shortly after 1 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 24, her 15th birthday. She walked south on Rt. 29 toward West Chester, to meet on the way a friend, John Launi, 15, of 208 W. Gay st. West Chester, as she had done several times previously….The crime was never solved though a local private detective says she knows who committed the murder.

 

Yes I watch way too many detective stories, so I Googled .  First of all, the article mentions the Jerrehian Estate. That means this girl and her mom lived on the old Sharples Estate in West Chester – where Greystone Hall is.

(The Sharples Estate’s Greystone Hall was the brain child of architect Charles Barton Keen who was the grandfather of one of my close friends.  I also remember when the Jerrehian family was fighting the West Chester Area School District over eminent domain. In more recent time, people have been up in arms about development on the Jerrehian Estate. But I digress.)

I Googled some more and came up with a Find A Grave page for Mary Constance Evans.  The Find A Grave page created by a Daniel Oh (whom I do not know how to reach in a timely manner) contained a piece by a private detective. Her name is Eileen Law, and I spoke with her this afternoon. I realized as I was reading what she wrote that I wanted her permission to republish what she wrote in it’s entirety, not just an excerpt.  So I looked up her office telephone number and gave her a call. What an awesome lady!  She gave me her permission so here we go:

Rest in Peace Connie Evans
By Private Detective Eileen Auch Law

On Saturday, October 24th, 1964, Mary Constance “Connie” Evans (her family called her “Conti”) left her home on the Jerrehian Estate at 1028 Phoenixville Pike in West Chester, (West Goshen Township) Pennsylvania at approximately 1:35 p.m. It was her 15th birthday. She formerly lived on Darlington Street in the borough of West Chester and attended North Junior High. She was to meet her boyfriend, John Launi, who was going to meet her halfway, and accompany her into West Chester so that she could buy a birthday present. Later, the two were to meet with her mother and aunts in town for dinner and a birthday cake her mom had yet to pick up. When John knocked at her mother’s door asking for her, Mrs. Evans knew something was wrong…

Mrs. Evans (also Connie) contacted West Goshen Police Department immediately. The first officer who responded was a friend of Mrs. Evans – Sgt. Fran. (He did not want his last name used.) He took down all of the information and Mrs. Evans was told that they had to wait another day before they could put the information about her disappearance out in case she was a runaway. Some thought perhaps she might have left to see her father in New Mexico and stay with him awhile. Mrs. Evans knew better…

A search team was put together and well over two hundred volunteers from law enforcement, Fame Fire Company, neighbors and friends combed a four square mile area. Blood hounds were brought in and tracked her scent to the vicinity of Phoenixville Pike and Route 322. Several private airplanes and two helicopters from the Willow Grove Naval Air Station crisscrossed the area for hours and reported seeing nothing out of the ordinary. Men on horseback, scuba divers who searched reservoirs, lakes and ponds were disbursed. Law enforcement set up road blocks questioning passersby to no avail. They all believed that there is no way Connie would have gotten into a vehicle with a stranger on her own volition. Further, many told me that she would have fought like hell anyone who tried to harm her.

A man named Fred, who lived on Phoenixville Pike and who was getting his mail that afternoon, called police with some disturbing information. He told them he saw a man who appeared to be half black and half Hispanic or Italian drive by who had gone off the road a couple of times driving pretty fast. He says he got a good look at him, and what was disconcerting was that this man had an “arm lock around a girl’s neck who had dark brown hair – like he was hurting her – her head was flush up against him so he couldn’t see her face.” He was headed away from West Chester on Phoenixville Pike just before King Road.

West Goshen Police Officers Lt. Tom Flick, Sgt. Fran and others, talked about a man they knew from West Chester who matched that description and whom they knew had been in trouble with the law. They also learned he frequently beat up his wife. They contacted West Chester Police Department and asked if they had a picture of the alleged perpetrator. They did, and turned over a copy to them. West Goshen put together a composite of several different pictures of various people with the same look, and then went to see Fred. Without hesitation, Fred pointed to the man in question and said, “THAT’S HIM!!!”

They learned that this man, although from West Chester, worked picking up trash for a trash collector in the Berwyn area. Lt. Flick went down to the company and picked him up and brought him in for questioning. I’ll call the man “Ef.” He brought Ef into the station and learned that he had formerly been arrested for child molestation and rape, for which he served time in Eastern State Penitentiary. Ef continued saying: “I can’t go back to jail again. I can’t go back to jail.” West Goshen received a call from Ef’s boss saying: either arrest him or release him. I have unhappy customers who need their trash picked up.” They released him…

On Sunday, November 29th, 1964, at approximately 1:00 p.m., 36 days after Connie went missing, Joseph Celsi, 37, an insurance underwriter, while walking his dog along Berkley Road on the Theodore K. Warner Estate in Devon (about a half mile away from the Devon Horse Show grounds) discovered an area where his dog started to dig at. He saw strands of brown hair protruding from this area where it appeared another animal had started to dig. He found a hand…

He flagged down a passing motorist who contacted Easttown Township Police Department. Then Patrolman Stanley Scott (now a Judge) and Chief of Police John Bunce responded. Patrolmen Scott examined the shallow grave right beneath an evergreen tree. He dug Connie’s body up by hand. She was naked from the waist down. The black leather jacket and the watch she had been wearing were never found. That night, Mrs. Connie Evans, next to her friend, Sgt. Fran, stood mute as he showed her the clothing: a blouse, knee length dungarees, undergarments, and a gold friendship ring. When he asked if they were Connie’s, all she could do was nod her head.

An autopsy was performed by Chester County Coroner Thomas Monteith and the cause of death was listed as strangulation. Further identification was made with dental records. Over three hundred people attended the funeral of Mary Constance Evans. Many, like me, had never even met her. She is buried in St. Agnes Cemetery…

Many people were questioned. Theories and rumors abounded, including one that a teacher may have been involved, or a police officer or a high profile official. Each department had their own theory. West Goshen P.D. never stopped believing it was “Ef.” In fact, they picked him up again, and questioned him. They also wondered where his vehicle was. Ef told them that someone had stolen it. Based on the information they received from the resident Fred, they arrested him for Murder believing they had enough probable cause. Ef went before Magistrate Meredith Cooper, who believed there was not enough evidence to bind him over for court, and he was released…

Sometime much later, an Officer from Tredyffrin Township Police Department discovered an abandoned vehicle which appeared to have been “torched.” They were able to determine that the vehicle belonged to none other than Ef, with a West Chester address. The address was on Miner Street, right around the corner from where Connie had formerly lived. “Mrs. Ef” who had two children – a daughter and a son around Connie’s age, told them she had been separated from her husband. He would go there to visit his children on occasion. Sadly, back then, none of the departments shared information. West Goshen was not aware that Tredyffrin found a torched car belonging to Ef and Tredyffrin wasn’t aware that Ef had been picked up for questioning, let alone arrested…

Like many of my friends and classmates, I became involved in this case when I was eleven years old. Connie lived a couple of miles away from where I grew up. I was told by my parents I was never allowed to ride my bicycle into West Chester again. Though I never met Connie, her school picture in the newspaper with a smile of what appeared to be a sweet girl haunted me. Even today, when I drive past the place she was last seen or her then home, I get a lump in my throat ~ just like so many other people I have talked with over the years…

When I became the District Attorney’s secretary, later a paralegal in 1971, I studied Connie’s file, vowing to find her killer. I met many in law enforcement back in those days from various departments, all sharing their own stories and memories. On December 23, 1998, Lt. Tom Flick, Lt. Richard Weimer, former Commander of the Pennsylvania State Police and with whom I worked as a Detective before, and Officer Phil (formerly of West Chester Police Department) stopped by my office unannounced. They saw a file I have kept on my desk all of these years with the label: “Connie Evans.” Tommy said, “How could you know anything about that case – you were a kid! I was the lead investigator.” I told him it had haunted me all of my life, and that before I died, I vowed to find out who did it. We all talked for at least four hours. I took copious notes, and we all agreed that we would form a team to prove who killed Connie. Of course, Tommy already knew. He just couldn’t prove it. We met frequently and unfortunately, Tommy and Dick passed away, Phillip who had come to work for me as my Chief of Security, retired, and I was left to do it on my own. Or so I thought…

Recently, information came to me about Connie’s case. I was told that the teacher in question had not only committed suicide, but left a note behind confessing to killing Connie, and that it had been turned over to the authorities within the past year or so. I contacted the District Attorney and several law enforcement officers from the various departments. None were aware of any such note. I spent days searching newspaper articles, pulling old records, talking to witnesses, old teachers and family members and going back over the notes I made from viewing the file many years ago, and the information Tommy had provided. I tracked down the teacher’s widow, and spoke with her, her sister and the teacher’s sister. I got to the bottom of how this rumor started and more importantly, how it snowballed and took on a life of its own. Each time it was repeated, most especially at class reunions, a new comment was added much like a “whisper down the lane” type thing. People just wanted to lay to rest unresolved questions desperately seeking answers for a young girl whose memory was forever embedded in their minds…

With the most recent rumors behind, I wanted to make good on my vow to resolve this case once and for all and, specifically, to concentrate on and learn more about Ef whom so many believed was responsible. Ef’s mother, from West Chester, had been raped by an African American man while she was married. She had other children before and after Ef was born. When Ef was in eighth grade, he had stolen money from his parents, and when he pulled a knife on his “father” that was the last straw: he was kicked out of his home. He lived on the street for a while, and went from home to home, and married a woman who was sixteen years old. I found their marriage license application for whom his wife’s father signed for her as she was a minor. They had two children who lived on Miner Street: right around the corner from where Connie lived. We believe she knew the children and their parents. Ef’s family had called him a “bad seed” as he was always getting into trouble. He had not only a juvenile record, but had been arrested for child molestation and rape and served time in Eastern State Penitentiary. Ef’s wife, now deceased, divorced him. When I pulled the records, she even listed the docket number of the Rape case in the divorce complaint. I was curious to see what address Ef had been served at: My heart pounded when I saw the address in Devon — it was exactly one block away from where Connie Evans body was found…

I learned through records, a police officer, Mrs. Evans and Connie’s best friend, that the day she went missing, she had started her period. It is our belief that Ef torched his car to hide blood and any other evidence left as a result of what was no doubt a struggle in that car. Yesterday, I tracked down and spoke with Fred, the man who identified Ef driving erratically with the girl in the car. He is 90 years old now, and says he remembers it like it was yesterday. He described the vehicle exactly like what had been found by Tredyffrin so many years ago. While there isn’t concrete proof that Connie got into Ef’s vehicle, we now know that she knew Ef, as he was the father of her friends and neighbor. She had no reason to fear him. There are so many other aspects to this story and case. I could go on for hours. I don’t believe it’s important…

Ef died in the late 1980’s. You won’t find his grave. He was cremated because his estranged family didn’t have enough money to bury him. His former wife has passed as well. So did another woman with whom he lived in Berwyn. I found and spoke with his daughter who told me she really didn’t know her father. She said he started drinking heavily in the 1960’s and became an alcoholic…

While there isn’t DNA evidence to confirm many years of searching and putting pieces of the puzzle together, Connie’s parents and those of us who have worked on the case over the years are satisfied that this can finally be put to rest. Next month will mark the 47th year she has been gone, but never forgotten…

I learned a few other things: for years, on the anniversary of Connie’s disappearance and birthday, West Goshen Police Department set up road blocks in the vicinity of Phoenixville Pike and Route 322 handing out flyers and questioning people with the hopes that they may have seen something. Sadly, I learned that Sgt. Fran was so upset and frustrated about the outcome of Connie’s case; he left the department and moved to Florida. He was instrumental in helping me. When I told him of my findings, he got so choked up he couldn’t speak and when he did, all he could say was “Thank you.” Lastly, I learned that as a result of this case and the impact it made on a young man who had volunteered on the search team to find her, he went into the legal field and has been a Court of Common Pleas Judge and sits on the bench today. He is known to be firm, but fair to all who come before him…

Mr. and Mrs. Evans wanted me to thank all of the people who searched for Connie, prayed for her, and more importantly, never forgot her. Mr. Evans specifically asked that this story be told to the news media to give people closure…

As for me, I’ve always believed that when Connie took her last breath on earth, she breathed new life in Heaven. What a life that must be! I’m cautiously optimistic that when I drive past the area where she lived, the lump in my throat will be replaced with a smile.

Detective Eileen Auch Law
President, CIA, Inc.
September 16, 2011
 
 Burial:
Saint Agnes Cemetery
West Chester
Chester County
Pennsylvania, USA 
Created by: Dan Oh
Record added: Jun 04, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 37913048

 

I know from Ms. Law that she has had people reach out to her since The Daily Local chose this particular case to highlight as a #TBT.  And if you read her words above, if DNA evidence had been in effect in the 1960s, her case would be officially solved, and there would be no mystery.

This story of Connie Evans has had a profound effect of so many people.  She is a teenager frozen in time ans space. A life just beginning when it was frozen in time by her murder.  She could be anyone’s child.  Her poor mom.  Her parents were split up at a time when it was hard for a woman to be on her own, let alone raise a child on her own. Connie inspired Eileen Law to become a private detective.

These cases involving children are the worst, and even if they are adults when something happens, they are someone’s children. Like another missing person case that has interested me because it started in Lower Merion Township where I once lived – the missing person case of a nurse named Toni Lee Sharpless. (Yes, the Magic Kingdom does have a slightly sordid underbelly, doesn’t it?) My pal, writer Kathleen Brady Shea wrote about Toni Sharpless in August, 2016.

Back to Connie Evans.

Where Connie Evans was found – near or on Berkley Road in Devon in Tredyffrin is an area quite familiar to me.  Especially since I occasionally photograph the old houses on the Tredyffrin House Tour for my friend Pattye Benson.

I never knew about Connie Evans until my friend who is a life-long Chester County resident messaged me the article today and said how her aunt, who was 14 at the time has never forgotten the story. Her aunt didn’t know her, but they were close enough in age growing up in Chester County and her death made an impact on so many.

What would Connie Evans have been like if she had lived? Would she have gone to college? Gotten married and had her own family? It’s so tragic.

It also makes you wonder what has become of the people who were her friends.  What about her boyfriend who was named John Launi? How did this horrific event impact all of their lives?

Life is a gift.  And once again after spending some time dwelling on the murder of Connie Evans today I am once again reminded of it. Love your friends and family.

 

 

justice for argus & fiona: pilotti trial day 1

argus and fiona

I now understand why reporters say sometimes what they see in a court room haunts them.  I will be haunted a long time by the crime scene photos which were shown of the slain Bernese Mountain Dog puppies Argus & Fiona.

The  scene photos (I am not a police officer so I don’t know what  to call them), were not intentionally gruesome, they were what they were. (We saw a photo of the shotgun too.  It was not one that repeats, either, which means the buck shot had to deliberately reloaded, correct?) There seemed to be some sort of quiet sidebar conversation as in jury and audience could not hear) before the audience, judge, and jury saw the photos.  I am thinking it had to do with the photos – but I don’t know for sure.

The photos – Argus lay there on the ground like he was shot in mid-flight.  He seemed to be facing away from us.  Then there was the photo of the female puppy Fiona. This photo made me cry (several things made me tear up this afternoon- so much was so hard to hear)  it was so heart and gut wrenchingly awful.  Fiona was curled in a semi fetal position staring at the camera with lifeless eyes. That is the photo I will see in my head for a long time it is so awful.

But back to the beginning.  Three papers were there: Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily Local and Brandywine News Media.  There were Argus and Fiona friends and family and supporters on one side and Gabe Pilotti had a mish mosh of people on his side.  I never saw the man in person before today so I have no way of knowing who was family and who might have been church folk. I will note that whomever they are had minor children with them, who were in the room when the photos of the shot up dogs were displayed.  Not to judge, but would you have wanted your children to see that? The smiling Pilotti from the mug shot was not present today.

Ramsey, Pilotti’s attorney referred to a “media campaign” over this issue.  He seemed to make a lot of referrals to the Justice for Argus and Fiona Facebook Page and obliquely this blog (or in my opinion that is what it was) like we were all bad people for talking about this.  Judge Nagle seemed to shut this commentary down on several occasions as being somewhat irrelevant to the case at hand.

Pilotti’s attorney was somewhat brutal with the Bocks.  But that is a defense attorney doing their job I suppose.  I do think the defense attorney was unnecessarily hard on Mary Bock in particular – asked her something like did she have remorse over the whole incident.  My personal opinion was that asking something like that was gratuitously nasty.  She was practically in tears having to relive parts of that awful day as it was.

Pilotti’s attorney seemed to make a big deal out of these neighbors of Pilotti’s that the Bocks used to be friendly with – people named Dallas and Kelley Definbaugh.  I wonder, are those the people holding Pilotti’s gun?  Anyway, it is not like it is some dirty secret.  The couples used to be friendly, more from the wives knowing each other and kids being in same sections of classes at school.  But that changed. The kids moved on into different groups and classes at school and the wives don’t hang out any more.  So what?  Do you keep in close contact with people with whom you no longer share any meaningful commonality? I don’t.

I wouldn’t know the Definbaugh people if I fell on them, and am just getting to know the Bocks, so I can only go with my gut.  I like the Bocks.  They are honorable people who experienced something so horrible.  And when you see the photos of those dead puppies from that day and hear about how they were moved in a front end loader or a tractor or something to the township building the day they were shot, well let me tell you, you get a much more clear picture of how these people have suffered.

Remember this news report?

I also did not get why Pilotti’s attorney kept bringing up a letter that Mary Bock wrote to her neighbors after her dogs were shot. I mean get real, there are tons of kids out there and tons of people with dogs.  If she wanted to tell her neighbors is that so wrong?

And Pilotti’s attorney wants to make a big deal out of this blog?  I did not drive his client to shoot those dogs.  And I am not condoning violence against his client, only like hundreds of others out there hoping for justice and a strengthening of Pennsylvania dog laws.

Today we heard from Officer Russell from West Vincent Police Department.  He was the first on the scene and apparently present later when Pilotti was interviewed by police. He seems like a totally honorable and stand up guy.  He also seems to be some sort of authority on fire arms and he spoke with some intelligence about the gun used – a 20 gauge single shot non repeating shot-gun with 9 pellet buck shot if I have it correctly.

Officer Russell recounted that fateful February day calmly with some degree of detail. He remarked that at the time (as in day of shooting) he found Pilotti’s answers “vague”. (his verbiage) . He reported that on the day of the shooting in front of the Police Chief he asked Pilotti for a written statement to assist in the investigation. He stated that Pilotti in his opinion seemed hesitant to do so, but eventually went back to his garage and sat down and compiled a “list”. Officer Russell also described seeing the dogs.  He reported that Argus took a fairly direct hit to the head and the dog’s head was “kind of blown apart.” He described Fiona’s position (that I saw in the photos) and the blood coming out of her mouth and I believe he said on her paws.  I will admit the photo of her so disturbed me that I could not get past the quasi fetal position and lifeless eyes staring at the camera.

District Attorney Tom Hogan appeared in court to watch for a while at approximately 3:45 p.m.  That made people sit up and take notice – he is a busy guy so you know he can’t audit every court proceeding.  I was thankful for his presence.

I stayed until just before the defense was going to cross-examine Officer Russell.  People in the court room said that got out of hand.  I remember before I left Officer Russell stating that they wanted to talk to Pilotti again because “something did not seem right.”

Pilotti’s attorney at one point referred to when Pilotti had shot dogs before, but West Vincent locals told me that those dogs were shot on a neighbors property because the neighbor’s animals were being mauled and is that not the truth?  So that was something different from when Argus and Fiona were shot, huh?

And I have to ask (bearing in mind my limited knowledge of buck shot) but if  Argus and Fiona were actually pursuing sheep why is it the audience and jury didn’t hear about injured sheep? Or see photos of bloodied sheep or dead sheep? I ask because as buck shot was explained today to everyone in that courtroom it sort of spreads or sprays out, right?

Watching the face of the jury all afternoon was quite interesting.  That is all I will say on that.

Court continues tomorrow at the Criminal Justice Center in Downtown West Chester, PA.  I strongly urge dog lovers to attend if possible. The Bock family and the memory of these puppies deserve our support in a peaceful way as an extended community.  It is a public proceeding and the courtroom is open, not closed. You can go to all or part of tomorrow.  Parking is not expensive in the new garage, either. You just park, go through the court screening and ask to be directed to Judge Nagle’s court (7th floor room 8 off the top of my head)

Today was deeply disturbing and very emotional. But I am glad I went. It makes me even more resolute than ever that dog laws need to change.

And here is some of the media coverage:

Trial begins for 73-year-old accused of killing neighbor’s dogs
Mari A. Schaefer, Inquirer Staff Writer 

Posted: Monday, September 9, 2013, 4:54 PM

In a case that outraged animal-rights activists and generated national  attention, a trial began Monday for a Chester County man charged with killing  his neighbor’s dogs because he believed they posed a threat to his sheep.

Gabriel Pilotti, 73, of Chester Springs, was charged with cruelty to animals  for shooting the two Bernese mountain dogs — 2-year-old Angus and 1-year-old  Fiona — after they had escaped the fenced yard of their owners, Mary and  William Bock….In his opening statement, Kevin Pierce, assistant district attorney said  Pilotti willfully and maliciously killed the two dogs in cold blood and then  left a voice message for a neighbor bragging about the incident……Argus was shot in the head as he  trotted up toward Pilotti and that Fiona was shot as she ran away. Pilotti did  not try to yell at the dogs or chase them away with a broom, he said.

“He choose to go to the most extreme measure first,” said Pierce.

Also noteworthy?  The Chester County SPCA which is currently under fire in Chester County and beyond did NOT bother to show up today.  I found that extraordinarily cowardly.  They should have put the other stuff aside and shown up for the dogs.  Good thing no one was depending on them for anything.

Here is the Daily Local:

Daily Local: Motives differ as trial starts in dog shooting case

WEST CHESTER – Gabriel Pilotti, the 73-year-old West Vincent resident on trial for shooting two dogs that wandered onto his property, was portrayed in two different lights Monday as his case opened in the Chester County Justice Center.

To the prosecutor, Pilotti was a trigger happy man who shot first and asked no questions – taking the matter of dogs in his pasture to the “most extreme measure” by killing the two dogs without provocation.

“This is a simple case of a cold blooded killing of two family pets,” Assistant District Attorney Kevin Pierce told the nine women and three men on the jury in Senior Judge Ronald Nagle’s courtroom. He said the defendant “mowed down” one of the dogs as he “moseyed” toward him, and then reloaded his shotgun and shot and killed the second, younger dog as it ran from the yard.

gone but not forgotten

On February 19th, 2013 this blog broke the story of intolerable cruelty in West Vincent Township.  It was about the unwarranted shooting of two puppies named Argus & Fiona by a man named Gabe Pilotti in West Vincent Township. Since that time there has been much back and forth and legal hop scotch as people wait for a trial date so justice may be done the right way through our legal system.

This morning was supposed to have been the court date at the Chester County Courthouse in downtown West Chester, PA.  These were the charges levied back in February by the Chester County District Attorney’s Office:

CHARGES

1 M1 18 § 5511 §§A2.1IA Cruelty To Animals 02/12/2013 T 295420-6

2 M1 18 § 5511 §§A2.1IA Cruelty To Animals 02/12/2013 T 295420-6

3 M2 18 § 2705 Recklessly Endangering Another Person 02/12/2013 T 295420-6

argus and fiona

But according to my sources, no court date took place earlier this morning.  (I am sick or I would have been at the courthouse, truthfully.)

The Bock family has suffered through the loss of their dogs and the ups and downs of the justice system, and I feel really badly for them and the memory of Argus & Fiona.  No one has asked for the sun, moon, or stars.  No one has condoned or asked for vigilante justice.  All anyone has asked for is that the justice system see this through and for lawmakers to consider strengthening dog laws in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania so families and pets in this state not only have legal recourse, but laws that aren’t antiquated and might actually protect innocent pet owners and their domestic animals.

We’re still waiting.  And we want everyone to know we have not forgotten Argus & Fiona.  And neither should you.

I know that West Vincent Township would love everyone to forget about Argus  & Fiona because it happened in that warped Mayberry.  And like everything else that happens in West Vincent, it seems to be a bit of a hot mess still doesn’t it?  After all, why is it months ago when the charges were announced, why is it that West Vincent Township PD couldn’t confiscate one shotgun pending the outcome of the legal proceedings?

Mary Bock commented the other day on the Justice for Argus & Fiona Facebook page:

To all the wonderful people who have been supporting us and this fight for justice for Argus and Fiona, I wanted to give you a little update as to where we stand.  Because the defense has control over  the dates for court appearances, our initial main concern was having the gun removed from Pilotti’s possession….but because he has an “emotional attachment” to the gun it wasn’t that easy…..The DA suggested…that the gun be placed in a lock box at his neighbor’s house. The background checks were done on the neighbor and the gun was handed over….Sometimes it’s very hard to get any information…Thank you everyone for the continued support and all of your kind words

Again, I am not having a gun debate here (nor am I deliberately slamming or questioning the Chester County District Attorney’s office ) but I still fail to understand that since there has been a reckless endangerment charge pending why West Vincent didn’t pick up that gun and simply lock it up for safekeeping when those charges landed months ago? I have been told that is common practice when there are legal proceedings pending so I have always found this back and forth on what should be fairly cut and dry confusing.  I also do not get how you could have an emotional attachment to a shotgun, do you? I sure hope that West Vincent has periodically checked to see that this gun is in fact locked up  in this neighbor’s gun safe don’t you?

I do know that people in West Vincent are holding their breath still on this and let me be abundantly clear, I embrace responsible dog ownership just like I embrace responsible gun ownership.  I also respect the farmers’ rights to defend their livestock in crisis situation, but this was never a crisis situation because these puppies never attacked anything did they? I am also still at sixes and sevens as to whether or not Gabe Pilotti is actually a farmer or truly a hobbyist?  There is a difference.

I will also state again for the record that despising what Mr. Pilotti did in February is honest human emotion.  However I do not condone the behavior of people who stood in the middle of roads shouting with bullhorns or trespassed on people’s property or threatening him.  That is all wrong.

I post today to reaffirm that  people have not forgotten these poor dogs and what fate befell them and to remind lawmakers that they can’t just talk a good game when it comes to protecting our domestic pets like dogs.  They actually have to get off their duffs and DO something.  These pets aren’t property like an azalea bush or an ear of corn, they are part of our families. And since Argus & Fiona were shot to death we have heard of other cases of intolerable cruelty like this in Pennsylvania and other states.

Please contact your lawmakers again about Justice for Argus & Fiona and for changes to the dog laws and animal cruelty laws so animals are properly protected. I would also go as far as to suggest not only contacting your state elected officials (as in State Representatives and State Senators) but your U.S. Congressman as well for stronger Federal laws.  For most of us in Chester County, we are either served by Pat Meehan or Jim Gerlach.

And I really hope some day that Mr. Pilotti can express remorse to the Bocks eye to eye, don’t you? After all how will that man ever have peace in his own world without doing that?

I will close this post with a Buddhist prayer I find oddly apropos here today (yes I know not the norm you expect from a Catholic but never the less):

By the power and truth of this practice:
May all beings have happiness and the cause of happiness
May all beings be free from sorrow and the causes of sorrow
May all never be separated from the sacred happiness which is sorrow less
And may all live in equanimity without too much attachment and too much aversion
And live believing in the equality of all that lives.

-The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying

 

it’s not easy being green….

green

It’s not easy being green…poor, poor West Vincent Township.  So much darn odd stuff happens within the township boundaries, you just can’t make it up.

The latest is a gargantuan pot bust.  Yes marijuana is apparently the new crop in that part of Chester County.  I can’t see it from my window and that is good.

Before I post the article I would mention that West Vincent residents have an AWESOME and not connected to the current regime candidate for supervisor – John Jacobs.  Given the odd things that happen to West Vincent residents  have an interest in cleaning up local government, can it be said this man puts himself at great risk to run?  Well of he can do that, you all should be able to vote for him.  West Vincent residents all say they want change, well the only way to get that is to break the death grip the current network has with a new supervisor.

You want change, people?  Vote the old out and vote in the new.  John Jacobs has a website.   Here is a link to other endorsed candidates if you are interested. Yes it is GOP and I would put up the Democratic info if I could find it. But the truth is who is representative of them in West Vincent? Clare Quinn?  Lordy that isn’t something to brag about and are you all still paying her benefits? Also worth noting? Another fabulous upstanding and honest person that I think would be marvy is running for West Vincent Township Auditor – Maria Holderness. Seriously people, it is time for change in your neck of the woods. After all what does it hurt to consider people whose hands AREN’T in some cookie jar somewhere?

Here is the article and yes, it’s not easy being green:

DA: major West Vincent pot grow operation busted

Posted: Thursday, 05/09/13 01:24 pm Updated: Thursday, 05/09/13 07:14 pm

WEST VINCENT — Over 180 marijuana plants were seized and one man was arrested Tuesday after police discovered a “sophisticated” grow operation at a home in the 1200 block of Jaine Lane in Spring City.

“Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan announced the arrest of Christian Titone of Spring City Thursday for allegedly running what police said was a sophisticated hydroponic grow operation and that housed over 180 live marijuana plants .”;
According to the Chester County District Attorney’s Office, 53-year-old Christian Titone was arrested after police executed a search warrant at his home. Officials said the home was located in a secluded area of the township.

“Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan announced the arrest of Christian Titone of Spring City Thursday for allegedly running what police said was a sophisticated hydroponic grow operation and that housed over 180 live marijuana plants .”;
“The defendant thought he could outsmart the police trying to grow marijuana in a secluded section of Chester County. He was wrong,” said District Attorney Tom Hogan. “We have confiscated his drugs arrested him, and now will move to forfeit everything associated with his drug dealing.”

photo courtesy of The Daily Local News via Chester County DAs Office

photo courtesy of The Daily Local News via Chester County DAs Office

“A large number of grow lights removed from the West Vincent home of Christian Titone, who is charged with a large-scale marijuana growing operation.

Police said investigators executed a search warrant at Titone’s home during Tuesday’s early morning hours. Inside, they found a sophisticated hydroponic grow operation…also found processed marijuana ready for sale…Titone’s home also had a “state of the art” surveillance system…After the search, executed by the Chester County Detectives and the county’s High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Strike Force, members of the state police’s Clandestine Laboratory Team removed the marijuana and all of the growing equipment, officials said.

I notice the Daily Local lists a rather long list of law enforcement involved.  Basically everyone except West Vincent’s own police department and why?  Was West Vincent’s Chief out collecting Gabe Pilotti’s gun or something?  Pilotti is the one who shot the dogs in cold blood, remember?   One would have thought that the West Vincent police would have confiscated the weapon pending the outcome of the court case, right?  But we’re not here to discuss dog killers today.

Anyway just chalk it up to more unpleasant spotlights shining down on West Vincent.

Also found coverage in the Philadelphia Inquirer:

POSTED: Thursday, May 9, 2013, 4:07  PM

Aubrey Whelan Philadelphia Inquirer

Chester County detectives have arrested a West Vincent man who, they say, was  running “a major marijuana grow operation” in his house.

On Tuesday evening, detectives entered the home of Christian Titone, 54, on a  search warrant. Inside, they found 188 marijuana plants — part of what Chester  County prosecutors called a “sophisticated hydroponic grow operation” that  included lights, ventilation and an irrigation system, according to court  documents.

Titone had also set up a high-tech surveillance system that allowed him to  monitor everything inside and outside the house from HD monitors, detectives  said. The detectives also found processed, ready-to-sell marijuana in 12  different strains — with names like “Afrodite Mother” and “Ace of Spades,” they  said

Kudos to the Kennett Times for a catchy article title that cracked me up.

The Kennett Times: Plethora of pot plants lead to drug bust

W. Vincent resident accused of  marijuana-growing operation

By Kathleen Brady Shea, Managing Editor, The Times

Authorities said an alleged marijuana grower thought his remote location and sophisticated surveillance system would protect him from police….“A high-tech, high-end drug operation like this would be providing drugs to suppliers from Phoenixville to Kennett Square and points beyond,” said Hogan….Titone has been charged with several drug-dealing offenses, including possession with the intent to distribute controlled substances and possession of drug paraphernalia, the criminal complaint said.  Hogan said Titone was released after “promptly” paying $100,000 cash bail. He said a preliminary hearing would be scheduled in the near future.

the bell “tolls” for thee, chester county

With apologies to John Donne, the poem reference just popped into my head.

I find it somewhat ironic that I just posted within the past few days a post cautioning about allowing Chester County to be swallowed by rampant development . And well here we are, with a story in The Daily Local about one of the kings of plastic houses, Toll Brothers.

The long and short of it is, now I know what that itty bitty zoning notice was about on Little Connestoga Road that I saw within the past few months.

How saddened am I by this news?  A lot, actually.  Among other things, although I don’t know Chester County really well yet, I think this is proposed rather close to the Byers Station Historic District. This is all being proposed in Upper Uwchlan, a municipality I know nothing about.

I am pretty sure when the hot air balloons landed on 9/11, they landed within a Toll Development – maybe even Byers Station.  It was a very Welcome to Stepford feeling with rows and rows of houses exactly the same.  From the air, they looked like Lego buildings.  The field we landed on had something to do with the development’s septic.  I don’t know much about this stuff, but that was what I was told when I asked why everything had a wafting odor of rotten eggs – you know that icky sulphur smell?

Anyway, I am very troubled by all this development.  Not just because once open space and agricultural-use land is gone, it’s gone, but also because Chester County is so very beautiful.

I don’t like plastic houses.  I don’t think developers should be allowed to continue to contort Chester County into a series of homogeneous plastic communities with no spirit, no soul, zero individuality.

Here’s the article I found today.  Below it is a very interesting one from the Inquirer in 1987 which talks about the Frame property now in play….when it was a cattle farm and they were worried about then proposed plastic house developments causing the farm to flood.

Again, this is all happening in Upper Uwchlan Township.  I guess Upper Uwchlan sees its future as being composed of 100% recycled plastic material?  Will they be substituting grass for Astroturf too?

When is enough development enough in Chester County? Where do communities draw the line?  What do you think about development in Chester County, especially in this economy?

What happens here is bog turtles are discovered? (And by all means, if you have seen bog turtles around here, by all means speak up!)

And based upon the article I found in the archives of the Philadelphia Inquirer, when did this Frame family go from their position back then of concern about development, to becoming part of the problem?

Toll Bros. wants to build 67 new homes

Sara Mosqueda-Fernandez

09/21/2012 – 11:55 AM EDT  Updated 09/21/2012 – 7:28 AM EDT

UPPER UWCHLAN – The Toll Brothers company is currently seeking a conditional use approval from township supervisors in their attempt to construct 67 new single-family homes on the Frame Property.

The conditional use would include use of the Flexible Open Space Design Option, and placing improvements within steep slopes to construct the dwellings.  The proposed site for the construction is located along Little Conestoga Road.

The hearings, which have occupied three supervisor meetings and remain ongoing, have addressed wastewater treatment, traffic planning and design, recreational space.

With the proposed houses within service area of the Route 100 wastewater treatment plant, Toll has proposed use of the plant and disposal in their existing field sites at the Reserve at Eagle, Byers Station, and Ewing subdivisions….

John Snook, a professional land planner at the Brandywine Conservancy, was hired to consult for the township regarding Toll’s proposed plans.

Snook said that there are a few significant concerns that he hopes will be addressed through conditions that the township might impose on the developers, such as replanting vegetation in some areas to strengthen riparian buffers.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service previously requested a study to determine whether bog turtles inhabit the area, which has yet to be accomplished.  Snook said that wetlands in the northern and eastern tracts of the property were characteristic of habitats that typically harbor bog turtles, which are protected under the U.S. Federal Endangered Species Act.  Should bog turtles be found, the commonwealth would institute greater constraints on the development project.

Plan For 183 Townhouse Units Is Presented To Commissioners

March 15, 1987|By Wendy Walker, Special to The Inquirer

Developer Phil Davies of Kimberton has presented a plan for Eagle Falls, a proposed 183-townhouse subdivision, to the Upper Uwchlan Planning Commission.

The 31-acre tract borders Little Conestoga Road and Route 100 and is zoned for townhouse development. At Thursday night’s meeting, Davies said the townhouses would be built in clusters of four, five and six units and would be divided into three “villages,” each with its own residents association.

The developer said that the main entrance to the tract would be on Little Conestoga Road opposite Buckingham Drive. A road would run through the site to a shopping center planned for property owned by Frances Funderwhite on Park Road, Davies said…..

In other business, farmer Robert Frame Sr. and his son, Robert Frame Jr., told planners that a 49-house development proposed by Bernard Hankin Builders of Exton would flood Frame’s 103-acre cattle farm on Little Conestoga Road.

“I know every inch of that land. I’ve farmed it for years and years, and it’s a bad situation,” the elder Frame said.

“Pop’s right,” said his son, who is a lawyer and a member of the Planning Commission.

The Frames said that they also were concerned that future residents could use chemicals on their lawns, which could pollute the farm’s water and poison the cattle.

“What’s going to happen when we have animals that are all four legs in the air?” the younger Frame asked the planners. “Who’s going to take the responsibility?”

of freedom and balloon rides

I will admit to still being up in the clouds after yesterday’s hot air balloon ride.  It was such an amazing experience.  As a breast cancer survivor, like many others, I have a bucket list.  I had never been on a hot-air balloon, and while I would never sky-dive, this is something I wanted to do. So I can cross this off my list!!

I took hundreds of photos…including from the air….I am still sifting through most of them.

9/11 has a very significant resonance with Americans.  Like the assassination of President Kennedy or say, Martin Luther King, Jr. this will live in our memories and hearts forever.

Yesterday however, more Americans died on 9/11.  In fact, a total of four Americans died in Libya in an extremist attack.  Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other embassy staffers were brutally gunned down by a rocket attack on the car they were riding in.  In addition to this horrific event in Libya, the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, Egypt was also attacked.  The Washington Post says the whole thing in Libya may have been planned in advance.

I am so tired of Middle East conflict. Let them have their holy war on another people. The Christian Science Monitor has a wonderful piece all should read.

So I don’t know what to think.  I was moved nearly to tears yesterday when all those first responders from Chester County showed up to watch the balloons take off.  A sea of mostly blue uniform shirts dotting a freshly cut green field.

It’s so weird, I find a very famous quote haunting me this afternoon.  The quote is from our Declaration of Independence.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

I am glad we are free, but I wish people would stop blowing up Americans.  And on our own soil, I wish the petty tyranny of small minded government officials in local municipalities like Tredyffrin and West Vincent would cease.

I am proud to be an American but petty tyranny and unecessary death and destruction makes me sad.

One other thing.  Yesterday I rode in the flag balloon with a favorite Chester County reporter from The Daily Local, Sara Mosqueda-Fernandez.  Here is her article about our ride:

By SARA MOSQUEDA-FERNANDEZ
smfernandez@dailylocal.com
Published: Wednesday, September 12, 2012
UPPER UWCHLAN — Hot air balloons, including one styled as an American flag, honored first responders Tuesday in Eagle on the 11th Anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
America One, an experimental hot air balloon that measures 78 feet long and 53 feet high, took off with three other hot air balloons to honor the lives lost 11 years ago and to thank the county’s emergency responders, many of whom are volunteers.
“We greatly appreciate you being out here, especially as volunteers,” Barry DiLibero said prior to taking off in America One. “You sacrifice so much more of your time for no pay. This is always our thank you to you for all that you do.”
Present at the event were Lionville, Kimberton, West Whiteland, Glenmoore, Goshen and Honeybrook fire companies, who were only notified about the event less than 24 hours prior to lift off….According to Barry DiLibero, this expression of thanks to emergency responders is unique, producing not only a gigantic and patriotic sight, but also evoking both joy and sadness. The spectrum of reactions to enormous balloon was evident in older generations who can clearly recall the attacks, and in the community members, young and old, who watched the balloons from the take-off or waving from their backyards, with even some children chasing after the balloon to watch and aid as it touched back down after its flight.
“(Today) was amazing,” said Barry DiLibero. “(The fire companies) understand the power of the flag, and what it means. It’s about your love of country, your appreciation for living where we live, and what it means, what it represents to all of us.”

 

 

 

 

 

mixed nuts: negotiation update for west chester area school district

Whether you have a kid in the school district or not, if you live within the confines of the West Chester Area School District, you pay.

Within the past couple of days,  mailboxes all over the West Chester area received a mailing from the West Chester Area School District titled “Negotiation Update”. (You can also visit them on the web for further information HERE.)

When you look at the  Board vs. Union Proposal Analysis , the following really stood out:

For the Board’s contract proposal, total spending on teachers’ salaries and healthcare benefits will increase from $86.2 million in 2011-2012 to $93.4 million in 2014-2015. This will increase the District’s costs by $7.2 million. For the WCAEA’s proposal, total spending on teachers’ salaries and healthcare benefits will increase from $86.2 million in 2011-2012 to $107 million in 2014-2015. This will increase the District’s costs by $20.8 million.

So I have to ask West Chester, what are you willing to pay?  This comes out of your pockets, after all.

Of the issues in dispute, as per the mailing, here is some of what you are looking at:

WCASB (West Chester Area School Board) wants as far as Salaries:

 under board proposal, teachers will earn raises totalling 3.82% over first 2 years of 3 year contract or average salary will go from $67,800 to $71,200. In the 3rd year the district will offer a one time bonus of $1500 (+ 2.11%) to each teacher if average increase in combined real estate assessment growth in areas served by district exceeds 2.6% between 2012 and 2014.

What Union wants:

Salary increases of 18.3% over course of 3 year contract (intentional so it will exceed annual increases in healthcare contributions rates on the part of its members.) What union is asking for is that teachers receive both a cost of living increase plus a “salary column” increase or + 5.57% year 1, + 5.81% years 2 and 3.

WCASB (West Chester Area School Board) wants as far as Accountability:

If a teacher receives an unsatisfactory performance evaluation, they will not receive a salary increase the following year.

What Union wants:

The union proposal continues to allow members to receive annual raises without regard to performance evaluation.

WCASB (West Chester Area School Board) wants as far as healthcare:

District funds 90% of medical,dental, prescriptions, and vision year 1, 85% year 2, 80% year 3.  Also moderate (yes moderate) deductibles.

What Union wants:

In a nutshell an expansion of current healthcare benefits.

There are more sticking points having to do with retirement benefits, course reimbursement, work year/professional development time, work time and on-line course work.

I sort of agree with the teachers’ union as far as the on-line course work, because I have a problem with courses in a box…but as per the district when you compare the cost of the two proposals (and I quote from the flyer which was mailed out):

Comparing the Cost of the Two Proposals:

The cost of paying for a new teachers’ contract should be of particular interest to taxpayers, since they fund approximately 85% of the District’s budget.  The chart…indicates the difference between the school board’s proposal and the WCAEA proposal in each of the 3 years:

Year 1 – $4.9 million

Year 2 – $9.4 million

Year 3 – $13.6 million

So in digging around to see what the media is saying I found a blurb on West Chester Patch which says in part:

The following is a press release from the West Chester Area Education Association.

The West Chester Area Education Association (WCAEA) met today with representatives of the West Chester Area School District regarding contract negotiations. While no deal has been finalized, WCAEA President Debbie Fell said the teacher’s union and the school district have agreed to continue talks and have scheduled the next negotiation session for Thursday, August 16.

“We agreed to continue to meet in order to come to a fair and equitable resolution for everyone involved,” Fell said. “The WCAEA is dedicated to providing an excellent education for our children…

Alrighty, so one side mails, the other side press releases, but school begins September 4th and the children of the district are Malcolm in the Middle.

How do you all feel about that?

I found a letter in The Daily Local I would love to share:

Recently, there have been a number of newspaper articles and letters to the editor regarding the current contract negotiations between the West Chester Area School District and its teachers’ union. There have been some key numbers frequently mentioned including an 18 percent average pay increase over the next three years, as well as teachers will receive a 33 percent decrease in the effective compensation over the next three years if the proposed contract is adopted….I find it difficult to believe that the average teacher’s salary will be decreased by 33 percent over the next three years. The most recent letter was from the treasurer of the teachers’ union who again stated the 33 percent decrease concern. I believe it is necessary for that statement to be verified by details showing exactly how the average teacher’s current effective salary would decrease over the next three years from that teacher’s current effective salary.

  I would hope that a union representative would respond in writing with this information

Amen to that!

Suggested reading?

Opposing opinions may stall WCASD contract talks  BY JEREMY GERRARD jgerrard@dailylocal.com  Posted: 08/03/12 12:39 am

 

Residents Speak Out Against Union Dues Requirement: Residents at the West Chester School District Board meeting speak out against the district’s requirement that all teachers pay union dues. ByJake Speicher Email the author July 24, 2012

Letter: Teachers’ Union Disappointed in School Board.A letter from the West Chester Area Education Association expresses disappointment in the negotiating process to this point.  July 20, 2012

Ok, here is what I think: Both sides will of course (to an extent) interpret the facts to suit their cause.  No one is perfect.  When the economy was better, I am sure everyone can agree this district spent like a drunken sailor on leave, correct?

So now times are tight.  Funding, grants, you name it are down. Which means both sides need to give as they get.

However, that being said, I think this teachers’ union and others need to wake up and smell reality.

They aren’t being asked to suffer a great injustice if they have to contribute towards their healthcare benefits!  Give me a break!  I am one of the millions of Americans who pays for their own healthcare out-of-pocket.  As in 100%.  And oh yes, I paid for breast cancer doing that and survived just fine.

Salaries.  My goodness, where else can you earn a fine salary and take off a few months a year on the taxpayers? Wow.  Most of us in the private sector have considered ourselves lucky for years if we managed to get a cost of living salary increase!  Sorry, but between the salaries and the retirement benefits that enable teachers to not only retire early, but if they have been paying attention, retire rich, I do not feel the love in a need for an 18.3% bump up over three years.

Accountability.  Charter schools and private schools hold teachers accountable.  Heck most jobs in this country exist with a review process as part of the every day  dealio. Public school teachers should be equally accountable.  But if everyone is accountable than those who should have either chosen other career paths or been put out to pasture can’t slide by any longer, can they?

But is the school district itself with 100% clean hands here? Doubtful, never seen one that was.  School districts have all sorts of issues and skewed politics.  What are those in administration giving back as far as salary increases, perks, etc?  Are there positions within administration specifically that could be pared down or eliminated to save money? And above all else are kids in this school district getting an education they can actually use to better their futures?  And what about the bullying issues and other social issues which exist and I never seem to hear addressed? I found a tumblr blog post about bullying that is old that says in part:

Ironic the passing of Rodney King also saw Lou Ferrigno “Hulk” sworn in as a security officer in Los Angeles.  Now that most schools have completed their academic year, it would be time for the school administrations to review their policies for prevention of bullying.  In this area, the West Chester School District has a policy, most recent seems to be 8/08 and states it will be updated every three years.

Am I reading this correctly?  If so, WCASD has some ‘splaining to do there, huh?

And then there is the constant and troubling undertone that one political party runs the school board and school district?  I am a Republican but I still believe that one party rule anything is a bad idea and leads to petty tyranny.

Whatever, I am definitely an outsider looking in.  But what I have seen with regard to this school district is not particularly impressive.  Like much of the public school education in this country, it leaves a lot to be desired and is the only thing the majority of taxpayers can afford.  So taxpayers are stuck no matter what.

What are the taxpayers in the West Chester Area School District going to do?  Smile politely from behind PTA mom and dad faces or get up, stand up, be heard, and demand that both the district and the teachers’ union have accountability?

In my opinion, the choice is up to the taxpayer whether they believe it or not.  Taxpayers can have a real and valid say on how this plays out.   Start now.

Why don’t you contact some of the people listed below? Write the papers? What do you have to lose?  The answer is nothing and the kids have everything to gain.   When did education stop being about preparing future generations for life?

Dr. Marc Bertrando
Assistant Superintendent
Secondary Education  484-266-1004

Dr. Robert Fraser

Director of Curriculum and Instruction
Curriculum  484-266-1198

Dr. Suzanne K. Moore Director of Business Affairs

Business & Finance Department  484-266-1020

Members of the public may contact the Board by email or via the Board Secretary, Mrs. Pauline Bachtle by submitting information in the following manner:

By Traditional Mail:
West Chester Area School Board
c/o Pauline Bachtle, Board Secretary
Spellman Administration Building
829 Paoli Pike
West Chester, PA 19380

By e-mail:
pbachtle@wcasd.net
(Note: Mrs. Bachtle, the School Board Secretary, will see that all members of the Board promptly receive your e-mail.)

By Telephone:
Call Mrs. Bachtle at 484-266-1125 if you wish to speak personally with a member of the School Board. Mrs. Bachtle will forward your name and telephone number to the respective Board member.

Members of the 2012 West Chester Area School Board: 

Vincent Murphy, School Board President  vmurphy@wcasd.net

Heidi Adsett, School Board Vice President hadsett@wcasd.net

Sean Carpenter scarpenter@wcasd.net

Ed Coyle ecoyle@wcasd.net

Karen Miller kmiller1@wcasd.net

Dr. Maria Pimley  mpimley@wcasd.net

Linda Raileanu  lraileanu@wcasd.net

Maureen Snook  msnook@wcasd.net

Sue Tiernan  stiernan@wcasd.net

Robert Partridge Communications Program Director
Communications Department  484-266-1170

Dr. Leigh Ann Ranieri  Director of Pupil Services

Pupil Services Department  484-266-1229