Nearly two weeks after Cooper University Health System chief executive John P. Sheridan Jr. and his wife, Joyce, were found in their home, authorities have released few details about their deaths.
Several days after the fire in the couple’s Central New Jersey home, the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office said it was deliberately set.
Sheridan, 72, and his wife, 69, were found unresponsive in the second-floor master bedroom of their Montgomery Township home early Sept. 28. He was pronounced dead at the scene, and she was pronounced dead a short time later at a nearby hospital.
Authorities have not disclosed who they believe set the fire or why, or what led to the deaths of the prominent couple.
Map of the 21 counties of the State of New Jersey (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Arson and major crimes detectives were investigating a fire at the home of John P. Sheridan Jr., president and CEO of the Cooper University Health System, and his wife – whose bodies were found in their bedroom Sunday morning, authorities said.
Firefighters found Sheridan, 72, and his wife, Joyce, 69, when they were called to the couple’s home in Skillman, Somerset County, in central New Jersey. Neighbors saw smoke coming from the house but no flames.
The Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office said detectives from its arson task force and the major crimes unit assigned to the case had been joined by the crime scene investigation and forensic units.
The New Jersey regional medical examiner was scheduled to perform autopsies. No preliminary information had been released on the suspected cause of death.
Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Dauphin County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Harrisburg resident Michael Bordner had just put his eldest daughter to bed in his home at 2042 Susquehanna Street when, just after midnight Monday morning, chaos erupted.
“I laid down at about midnight and then, at about 12:15, I heard all the alarms going off in my home,” he said. “At the same time I heard my stepfather saying ‘Get [your daughter] grab the dog; we have to get out, there’s a fire!'”
Bordner’s stepfather, Tim Bucher, who was visiting the house Sunday night, had woken up only moments before when he noted a strange smell and bright light emanating from the row house next door at 2044 Susquehanna Street.
“I peeked out the third floor window because something didn’t smell right,” Bucher recalled, almost from a daze Monday morning as firefighters stomped up the ruined stairs to Bordner’s home. “It didn’t smell like a fire, but when I looked out the window and looked down I saw flames coming up from the floor below.”
MONTGOMERY COUNTY COURTHOUSE — A onetime homeless man is now residing in a jail cell after he admitted to starting a fire inside a vacant Pottstown apartment that resulted in a response from Pottstown fire officials.
Brian Jay Staub, 38, was sentenced in Montgomery County Court to 11 ½-to-23 months in the county jail after he pleaded guilty to a felony charge of arson endangering property in connection with the March fire at an apartment in the 400 block of Manatawny Street.
Judge William R. Carpenter, who accepted a plea agreement in the case, also ordered Staub to complete four years’ probation after he’s paroled from jail. The judge also ordered Staub to complete any drug or alcohol treatment that might be recommended by probation officials.
Staub, who court records indicate once listed an address in the 300 block of Chestnut Street in Pottstown, also must pay $1,000 restitution to Spring Hill Realty Inc., of Harleysville, which owned the property.
Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
(Updated at 3 p.m.) POTTSTOWN, PA — A borough woman was arrested for setting fire to her own home Sunday night after an argument with her domestic partner over parenting techniques with their children caused the police to be called.
Cora Lee Sharp, 48, is charged with arson after starting a fire in the kitchen of the home the couple and their two adopted children share on the 900 block of Spruce Street, according to the Pottstown Police.
The Pottstown Fire Department was dispatched to the residence around 9:06 p.m. Sunday and found multiple fires burning on the property, said Fire Chief Richard Lengel.
After 22 minutes, the fires, which were isolated to Sharp’s property, were extinguished.
Reading, Pa., – Police have charged a 43-year-old woman with starting a fire in her residence in a high-rise apartment building earlier this week, investigators said Thursday.
Tayna Wright told told Lt. Jeremy Searfoss, an investigator with the city fire marshal’s office, that she started the fire Monday about 11 am. in her third-floor Kennedy Towers apartment by intentionally placing a plastic toy on the stove and burning it, police said.
Fire personnel told police who responded to the fire that Wright told them she started the fire because “God had told her to do it,” according to Criminal Investigator Michael P. Perkins.
After some legal wrangling, three blighted properties on Monroe Street in Wilkes-Barre were demolished. The blighted properties became dumping grounds and the neighbors were bothered by noxious odors for several years. There have also been multiple fires (arson) at the site over the last two-years which have been a great concern for neighbors.
Blighted, and in this case vacant, properties are magnets for vandalism, squatters, dumping and rodents. These properties were jeopardizing the stability of an otherwise nice neighborhood. Repeated fires also created serious safety hazards for neighboring residents. Another issue here, there is an $18,000 tax lien on the property, which is still owned by Christopher Street Realty. The city is being reimbursed for the demolition of the derelict properties.
Kudos to Wilkes-Barre for taking the necessary steps to demolish these blighted properties and making this neighborhood safe and healthy once again!
Minersville Borough, Schuylkill County, has had 9 fires since April 24, 2010. The latest fires occurred one week ago. The arsonist struck once, the fire was extinguished. Two hours later, another home was set on fire a block away.
Residents are deeply concerned and even fearful. They are being encouraged to keep lights on and their eyes open. A crimewatch is hopefully being started and police are stepping up overnight patrols. A reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crimestoppers, toll-free, at 1-877-TIPS4SC. Individuals with information can also contact Minersville police directly at 570-544-6212. All information received will remain confidential.
Two Philadelphia tow truck companies are at war it appears. A dispute over who would get a tow job resulted in shots being fired in the Fentonville section of Philadelphia on Monday. The “rival” tow truck company’s employee is in the hospital.
After the initial shooting, more violence ensued when the shooter’s company had 13 cars torched. Then, the victim’s company had six shots fired at their office.
Yes indeed….when in doubt, whip out a gun and shoot someone or something. And we wonder what direction our country is headed??
Violence is never the answer people!
The shooter did surrender to police on Thursday. He is charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault and any thing else that could be thought of! GOOD!