When I was toiling for a Knight-Ridder newspaper, the executive editors of each paper wrote a monthly memo to HQ, bringing the boss and peers up to date about what they’d been up to for the last calendar page. Personnel changes, great moments, etc. Mild stuff that got passed around.
They varied in readability, but the best one by far was from the Philadelphia Daily News, i.e., the tabloid, i.e., the one that didn’t take itself as seriously as the other. That editor, Zack Stalberg, sprinkled his with short, blackly comic items from the police blotter, each one subtitled, “It’s a tough town.”
I thought of that when someone sent me the website for Philadelphia DA candidate Charles Peruto. The About Me page specifically, past the blather about his career bio and to the subheading “The girl in my bathtub.” The dead girl, specifically:
In 2013, I was dating a girl for about 6 weeks, and didn’t really know her. I learned more about her after she died by reading an investigative article done by Philadelphia Magazine, written by Lisa DePaulo, which opened my eyes.
In short, the best way to start with this is the Medical Examiner’s report. Her BAC was .45. The cause of death was alcohol intoxication, but because she was found in my tub, everyone, including myself, assumed she drowned. So many empty vodka bottles were found, it looked like there was a party in my house, but inspection of the security video of people entering and leaving showed only her.
Whoa, really? What a tough town. Of course, as in any story involving…anyone, really, it’s wise to seek out alternative versions, especially when the girl in the bathtub isn’t even named. In this case, the Daily Beast filled in some blanks. The girl in the bathtub was Julia Law, and:
The 26-year-old had been a paralegal in Peruto’s law office, where they struck up a romantic relationship. This was something of a pattern for the 66-year-old lawyer. As news of Law’s death broke, Peruto received a series of angry calls from a woman named Genna Squadroni. She was “his 25-year-old recent ex-girlfriend of three years,” Philadelphia Magazine reported, who had also worked in Peruto’s office—she had hired Law herself.
Also, the six weeks of dating and how he “didn’t really know her?” Hmm:
The description clashes somewhat with the message Peruto shared on Facebook shortly after Law’s death. “It’s very hard to find someone who really matches you on all eight cylinders,” he wrote at the time, in a post cited by NBC 10. “I found my soulmate hippy, and can never replace her. We worked and played, and never got enough life…Earth lost the best one ever. Happy birthday baby.”
Philadelphia isn’t my town, and I’m staying out of this one, but you know what I hear? That it’s a tough town.
So, a little more bloggage:
I don’t think Melinda Gates and I would ever be friends, but it’s refreshing to see one person immediately had the correct reaction to Jeffrey Epstein and acted on it, also immediately.
And how the second Civil War will start. With an election, of course:
The Big Lie that Trump really won the election is now canon among a majority of Republican voters. Any Republicans who refuses to toe the line is branded a heretic, and elections officials who dared to certify Biden’s win are being censured or stripped of their power. Arizona Republicans have sponsored a bogus “audit” of the election full of crackpot conspiracy theories, and Republican legislatures have been busy taking control of both running and certifying elections out of the hands of county official in Democratic-run cities and counties. The context of the January 6th insurrection at the Capitol was the attempt by Congressional Republicans to refuse to certify the Electoral College tally, in the hopes of sending the election back to gerrymandered Republican state legislatures and handing Trump a win as part of a anti-democratic coup. It was a physical coup attempt designed to intimidate Congress into enforcing a legislative coup. Republicans who refused to back the latter are facing steep primary challenges.
It’s hard to overstate how dangerous this is, and what its consequences might entail in the very near future. As Greg Sargent notes, the “GOP appears to be plunging headlong into a level of full-blown hostility to democracy that has deeply unsettling future ramifications.”
Monday we put the boat into the water, an act that is rarely easy but hasn’t led to disaster so far. Of course Mother’s Day at our location was rainy and dreary and cold, and only the rain and dreary will be gone tomorrow. But we’ll see. Wish us luck.