This week, PGN is marking the end of the ban on openly gay servicemembers and reporting on the House hearing on HB 300, a statewide nondiscrimination bill. The bill isn’t likely to have much movement, as it is currently in the State Government committee, headed by Republican Daryl Metcalfe. (PGN placed a call to his office inquiring about scheduling, and had not received a return call by press time. We’ll let you know if we hear back.)
Over the weekend, PGN learned about a lesbian couple who’d been arrested for burglaries in Upper Darby. Police allege the 19-year-olds stole everything from toilet paper to a 55-inch TV — without a car. The two are cooperating and have admitted their guilt, saying they stopped after they entered a house that contained a lion. Police haven’t been able to locate the lion.
Then there is the story about Louis Spadaccini, a baseball coach at Neumann-Goretti High School in South Philadelphia and Court of Common Pleas employee, who was arrested on charges of corruption of a minor, sexual contact and rape, involving two teenage boys.
Allegedly, Spadaccini took a 14-year-old boy to a hotel room on Sunday, giving him alcohol and prescription drugs. He returned the boy home several hours later, where the boy’s parents saw he was intoxicated and took him to the hospital; no sexual contact is alleged. Police arrested Spadaccini Tuesday and released him after he posted bail. He was arrested a second time Tuesday after a 13-year-old came forward with allegations of sexual assault over the summer.
Spadaccini was an “admired” coach and had led the Neumann-Goretti baseball team to win the Catholic League championship earlier this year, his second for the school. The Philadelphia Catholic League had named him Coach of the Year in 2008. Spadaccini is also an assistant to Common Please Judge Harold Kane at the Criminal Justice Center. The archdiocese has placed Spadaccini on administrative leave.
Also this week, a Buffalo, N.Y., gay teen committed suicide. Jamey Rodemeyer, a 14-year-old high-school freshman, was found dead on Monday morning.
Rodemeyer had told others about school and cyber-bullying; his family and friends thought he was stronger and handling it better.
Rodemeyer’s death follows three others from that area in early 2010, including a 17-year-old who attended the same high school.
In a tragic irony, Rodemeyer posted a video to the “It Gets Better” website in May, when he came out.
Unfortunately for Rodemeyer, it didn’t get better.