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The Post  
Medical Helicopter Crashes in Drexel Hill; Fairmount Fire Started by Christmas Tree and Lighter
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 01/12/22 12:14 am | updated: 01/12/22 12:14 am
Four people received non life-threatening injuries when a medical helicopter crashed in Delaware County on Tuesday afternoon, 1/11. It happened around 1 p.m. next to the Drexel Hill United Methodist Church on the 600 block of Burmont Road near Bloomfield Avenue in Drexel Hill. The medevac was transporting an infant from WellSpan Chambersburg Hospital in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania to Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. A nurse and two crew members were also on board. The helicopter began to experience some type of malfunction. The pilot was able to put the aircraft on the ground without causing serious injury or property damage. All four people on board were able to exit the wreckage of the aircraft on their own. The three adults were taken to Lankenau Medical Center and the infant continued their journey to CHOP by ambulance. "It's a miracle. It's an absolute miracle," said Upper Darby Police Superintendent Timothy M. Bernhardt. The EC 135 aircraft was from the LifeNet program, based out of Hagerstown, Maryland. The FAA and NTSB will be investigating.

Philadelphia fire officials believe that the deadly fire that killed 12 people in the Fairmount section last week started when a Christmas tree was accidentally set on fire. It happened around 6:40 a.m. Wednesday, 1/5, on the 800 block of North 23rd Street. The row house is owned by the Philadelphia Housing Authority and was split into apartments. "We believe with certainty, so 99 to 100 percent confidence, that the first item ignited in this blaze was a Christmas tree," Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Adam Thiel said. "A Christmas tree on January 5th. We believe with near certainty, based on the evidence, that the ignition source for that tree was a lighter that was located nearby." A "traumatized 5-year-old child," who survived the fire, told officials that he had been the one that used the lighter to ignite the tree. Investigators said that they disproved all other theories. They made clear not to place any fault based on the word of a 5-year-old. Investigators found several smoke alarms in the unit. They had been uninstalled and the batteries were removed. There was one working alarm, but it was located in the basement. Three adults and nine children died. The 12 victims have been identified as Dekwan Robinson, Destiny McDonald, Janiyah Roberts, J'Kwan Robinson, Natasha Wayne, Quientien Tate-McDonald, Quinsha White, Rosalee McDonald, Shaniece Wayne, Taniesha Robinson, Tiffany Robinson and Virginia Thomas.

A Montgomery County man who is accused of killing his ex-girlfriend while her three children were at home has turned himself in to police. 32-year-old Elvyn Almodovar Rodriguez is charged with murder, burglary, theft by unlawful taking, endangering the welfare of children and other related offenses in the death of 28-year-old Keishla Arroyo-Rodriguez. Rodriguez surrendered to police in York, PA, on Tuesday, 1/11. The incident happened on Monday, 1/10, at Arroyo-Rodriguez's apartment in Norristown where she lives with her children ages 7, 5 and 3. Rodriguez used to live there. He entered the apartment, went into the bathroom, and shot Keishla. He then locked the bathroom door and left with her car keys. The 7-year-old daughter knelt down, looked under the door, and saw her mother on the floor. She then called her father for help. Rodriguez will be arraigned on Wednesday and sent to Montgomery County Correctional Facility. There is no bail for murder.

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