On Monday a federal jury convicted a Philadelphia drug lord and his wife for selling crack, cocaine, heroin and PCP in Mayfair located in Northern Philadelphia. For more than four years, the drug lord Alexander "Reds" Rivera, 29, and his wife, Ileana Vidal, 25, sold drugs out of their home and garage that served as a stable where they kept animals. The two are scheduled to be sentenced on Feb. 29 and March 2.

Rivera faces a mandatory life sentence while Vidal is facing 10 years in jail. Currently she is off on bail, but the hearing scheduled for Thursday will reveal whether to revile the bail or change conditions.  

The FBI raided the "garage/stable" during the investigation of the Riveras where Rivera allegedly kept roosters used for cock fighting. Rivera's attorney said that the stable was the home to several animals such as horses, goats and chickens. It was a "petting zoo" for neighborhood children. The petting zoo stashed drugs that Rivera and his gang sold more than $18,000 work of crack per week from Feb. 2006 to Sept. 2010. In addition to the Rivera's garage/stable they used luxury cars, like Audis and Mercedes Benzes, to store, process and distribute drugs. 

According to the article the gang operated mainly around the intersection of Indiana Avenue and Lawrence Street in North Philadelphia and used guns and violence to protect their drug territory. 

Fifteen range members in the case pleaded guilty to drug conspiracy and related offenses, five of them testified against Rivera and Vidal at trial claiming innocence. 

This is my first post for my Digital Journalism II course as well as my whole life. Through this medium I will be growing as a blogger and becoming more adept to multimedia. Every week for the semester I will be covering major events through my assigned beat, The Philadelphia Inquirer.

I have never read The Philadelphia Inquirer but I look forward to reporting and following this news source. Every newspaper is different in one shape or another and I am anxious to see how Philly.com differs from other sites I visit repeatedly throughout the course of my day. 

Having never blogged before I am quite nervous and don't know how well I will handle it. Hearing about hyperlinks, StorifyLinkedIn, etc. is frying my brain but it will all be worth it when I land that first job and brand myself. I am familiar with WordPressTwitter, Facebook and other social media and have worked with multimedia such as Photoshop, Dreamweaver, FinalCut Pro and last but not least, Weebly.  

I hope to use this blog to connect with others in the field of journalism, The Philadelphia Inquireras well as any interests we have in common - and believe me, I have a lot of interests and passions so that should not be hard. I look forward to what is to come and I hope you do as well.