I hope you got through yesterday’s winter weather OK — and maybe even got a snow day out of it. Luckily, temperatures will rebound today. Earlier this month, the Inquirer reported on the arrest of William E. Johnson III, a man accused of stealing homes from the dead. Now a closer look at one of those homes by reporter Craig McCoy reveals yet another layer of questionable signatures. In other news, the rise of a synthetic drug called K2 is having an impact on Philly’s vulnerable populations.

— Aubrey Nagle (@aubsn, morningnewsletter@philly.com)

Donnie McLaurin Jr. weaves an unbelievable tale of how Gail Harrison took him into her Brewerytown home while his dad was in prison. She was like his stepmother. When he rummaged through her house after she died in 2011 he says he found a will naming him the heir to her newly valuable home.

The story is literally unbelievable to friends and neighbors who knew Harrison, as well as the Philadelphia Register of Wills, who now calls the will a counterfeit.

In the years since her death, Harrison’s home has been caught up in a tangled timeline of suspicious dealings by McLaurin and William E. Johnson III, a man recently arrested for stealing her home and six others.

Last week, President Donald Trump declared a national emergency in order to divert billions of dollars in funding from other federal projects to a border wall.

On Monday, 16 states — including Delaware and New Jersey — mostly led by Democrats — filed a lawsuit to try to block it. But Pennsylvania and 10 other Democratic states were absent from the suit.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro says, before deciding, he needs to know whether the money is going to be taken from his state.

SEPTA transit police have recently come under scrutiny for their interactions with homeless people in Suburban Station, including a January clash that turned violent.

Use of the drug K2, which can lead to erratic behavior and unpredictable side effects, is on the rise in Philadelphia and advocates for the homeless and those with addiction say it’s making the situation more volatile.

What you need to know today

Through Your Eyes | #OurPhilly

What a beautiful view, @bhalda.

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That’s Interesting


February 21, 2019
Signe Wilkinson
February 21, 2019

“We need to stop tricking ourselves that simply shuffling students around until the schoolyard looks diverse will magically address educational disparities. The real work is harder because it’s about the almighty dollar.” — Mastery Charter principal Sharif El-Mekki and Assistant Professor of Practice at Relay Graduate School of Education Zachary Wright on why fixing schools requires integration and equitable funding.

What we’re reading

A home mill can turn a cup of hard red wheat, left, into creamy, whole wheat flour, right, in as little as five minutes.
Grace Dickinson / STAFF
A home mill can turn a cup of hard red wheat, left, into creamy, whole wheat flour, right, in as little as five minutes.

A Daily Dose of | Flour

You can watch all the Great British Baking Show you want, but to take your home baking to the next level making your own flour is the real game-changer.