Killer sentenced after he’s caught through pictures on Facebook

Posted: August 24, 2012

Joshua Tucker has reserved his place in the long history of dumb criminals.

Had he not pawned a laptop computer he stole from a man he and three friends beat to death in 2011, police would never have found the pictures Tucker put of himself and the friends on the computer and on Facebook.

But as sinister as he was, after being arrested, Tucker, 20, of Sydney Street near Woolston Avenue in Cedarbrook, did the right thing.

He not only admitted taking part in the Feb. 12, 2011 robbery and fatal beating of laptop owner Huan Phu Dam, 56, but he also confessed to taking part in another murder a month earlier.

Tucker and his still-unidentified friends set up Jose Maldonado, 19, on Tabor Road near 4th Street, Jan. 16, 2011 just after 12:30 a.m. They beat and robbed the young landscaper, and one of Tucker's accomplices shot him in the neck.

Maldonado, a graduate of Saul High School of Agricultural Sciences, died four days later.

Rosalia Maldonado tearfully noted that the brutal, senseless death of her only son gave life to others, during Tucker's sentencing hearing Thursday before Common Pleas Judge Benjamin Lerner.

A 57-year-old man received his donated heart and lungs, a 54-year-old man received his liver and a 49-year-old woman received his kidneys.

"The tremendous pain still dwells in our hearts," she said of losing her son. "Sometimes, I cry myself to sleep ... My son was supposed to carry on his daddy's name."

For his part in the murder of Maldonado and Dam, who was jumped at Third Street and Ducannon Avenue in Olney, Lerner sentenced Tucker to 30 to 60 years in state prison.

The sentence on two counts of third-degree murder and two counts of robbery was negotiated between Assistant District Attorney Joanne Pescatore and public defender Andrea Konow.

Contact Mensah M. Dean at 215-568-8278 or deanm@phillynews.com. Follow him on Twitter @mensahdean

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