NewsWorks went back to check in on several of the stories it covered in 2012. These “What Happened Next” updates will run throughout December.
Roxborough family searches for answers in recent dog killing, March 28
The story: A 55-lb rescue dog named Mr. Dogg was shot and killed in his family’s fenced-in yard on Leverington Avenue earlier this year while his owner, Megan Gambone, and her 18-month-old daughter were inside.
After hearing the gunshot, Gambone rushed outside to find her dog next to the house with a bullet wound to his side. She took him to Penn Vet Hospital where he was euthanized after suffering from a collapsed lung. The veterinarian suggested that the bullet was from a .22 caliber gun, such as a small revolver, pistol or a rifle.
At the time, police said they couldn’t investigate because they didn’t have any leads, bullet casings, witnesses or motives. NewsWorks also checked in with Philadelphia’s managing director’s office to see if any barking complaints were reported for that address but came up with nothing.
What Happened Next? The Gambones eventually brought their case to the SPCA with the hope that it would launch a formal investigation. Unfortunately, nothing came of it.
“The police led us to believe it was a disgruntled neighbor, which makes us very uneasy,” Megan Gambone told NewsWorks in a recent email. “I just hope the person realizes how much they have hurt our family and that they are sorry for what they’ve done.”
The Gambones have since gotten a new dog, also a rescue from a shelter. Now, when they let their dog out, they stand out in the yard with him.
“It’s hard for us to trust that the same thing won’t happen again,” she said.
Are spiteful ‘haters’ to blame for an unsolved parrot-napping in Nicetown?, Nov. 15
The story: Cheron Ross of Nicetown had her beloved pet parrot Josie stolen from her perch on the porch of her Hunting Park Ave. home on Oct. 21.
On that Friday afternoon, an unknown person took Josie away, with her friendly “Hello” never to be heard by Ross or her neighbors again. While motive and suspects were in short supply, Ross’ brother-in-law Jimmy Weems speculated that the perpetrators were “just haters.”
What Happened Next? In December, calls to Ross from NewsWorks went unreturned, who, perhaps, was burned out from the November media blitz.
East Falls resident seeks support for neighborhood dog park, Feb. 22
The story: In February, NewsWorks reported on an East Falls resident who expressed a desire to create a dog park in East Falls.
Kelly Grieco, a resident of Stanton Street, announced her plans at a meeting of the East Falls Community Council early in the year. Support seemed to come from many quarters, and at a public meeting in May, Grieco and her supporters began focusing their efforts on several potential sites in the hillside community.
What Happened Next? After this meeting, however, momentum seemed to stall, and little was heard about the initiative for several months.
“Things have fizzled out with the dog park because there were many obstacles at the time,” said Greico in December. In addition, the additional demands of family and a new job have taken up much of her free time.
But, as she maintains, “It didn’t work out for now,” noting that she may revisit the project at some point in the future.
“It was more work than expected but now that I know what the hurdles are in advance,” she said. “I think I may be able to strategize a little better.”
Dog cruelty cases in Northwest Philadelphia spark PSPCA rally, July 9
The Story: In June 2012, two extreme cases of animal abuse shook the Northwest Philadelphia area. On June 25, the body of a pit bull named Chloe was found on the 700 block of Gray St. in East Germantown and died from severe burn injuries. Within a week, a four-month-old pit bull puppy, Hercules, was found suffering non-fatal, but similar, injuries on West Cheltenham Avenue in West Oak Lane.
Following these attacks, the Pennsylvania SPCA took action and hosted “Justice for Chloe and Hercules: A Rally To End Animal Abuse.”
With about 100 people and their pets in attendance, the PSPCA announced their new initiative, the “Fund for Humane Education,” which seeks to raise $100,000 to help PSPCA to expand educational programs to schools and camps, provide transportation for students to visit the shelter and hire a full-time coordinator.
What Happened Next: The PSPCA reports that Hercules was transferred through its partner, Animal Care Alliance of N.J., to Crown Veterinary Specialists in Lebanon, N.J. where he was nursed back to good health. It was also reported that during his stay at the hospital, Hercules had nightmares, but now sleeps in a comfortable dog bed in his new home.
He was happily adopted by one of the vets who helped save his life and now lives with a family of two parents, two children, a cat and a fellow dog.
The PSPCA is still seeking the $100,000 in funding it needs for the “Fund for Humane Education.” Wendy Marano, media specialist for the PSPCA, says they hope to launch the program as soon as possible. Donations can be made by calling 215-426-6304 (ext. 272) or by visiting www.pspca.org.
If you have any stories from 2012 that you’d like NewsWorks to follow up on, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.