April 10, 2015 |
A PIMP WHO chopped up a man's body with an ax two years ago, then dumped the victim's torso in the Schuylkill, pleaded guilty yesterday to third-degree murder and related charges. Keith Tolbert, 35, faced trial in the death of Francis Zarzycki, 40, of Somerton, who had been at Tolbert's Center City apartment on Aug. 26, 2013, to have sex with two prostitutes, but died during a struggle when Tolbert and the two women tried to rob him. Amid jury selection yesterday - five jurors had been picked - Tolbert instead decided to plead guilty to third-degree murder, abuse of a corpse and conspiracy to commit robbery, in a deal in which he is to be sentenced to 22 to 44 years in state prison, Assistant District Attorney Brian Zarallo said.
March 5, 2015 |
MURDER SUSPECT Tam Minh Le sat at a defense table yesterday and stared directly at the man who clambered out of the Schuylkill last year. Victim Tan Voong, 20, testified to a terrifying ordeal last August in which his friends - two brothers - apparently were beaten, stabbed and then kicked into the river with him. The brothers died. Le, 43, stared coldly and with confidence at Voong during his testimony. Authorities have said that Le, who served prison time for a 1993 killing in Rochester, N.Y., is associated with a Vietnamese-American gang called Born to Kill.
February 26, 2015 |
One would like to imagine that, as electrical engineers in the same group at Lockheed Martin, Michael Petner and Tuan Ngo are quick to offer each other words of encouragement. But is it always quite so boisterous? "Think light!" Petner shouted at Ngo on Tuesday. "Just keep those legs up. Good job!" The 145-pound Ngo grinned gamely in reply. It might have been partly a grimace. After all, he was stuck to a cinder-block wall with duct tape. At the defense contractor's Moorestown facility, employees are participating in National Engineers Week, a celebration of a discipline that too often goes without credit for its creativity and sense of humor.
December 19, 2014 |
A Vietnamese gang member charged this summer with the double slaying and abduction of two men found stabbed, bound, and beaten in the Schuylkill was added Wednesday to the U.S. Marshals Service's Top 15 Most Wanted list. Police obtained an arrest warrant in September for Tam Minh Le, 42, weeks after they fished the bodies of brothers Vu Huynh, 31, and Viet Huynh, 28, both of Paoli, from the river. The brothers had been bound with zip ties, stabbed, weighted down, and had their throats slashed and heads wrapped with duct tape.
September 24, 2014 |
A murder warrant has been issued in last month's double slaying and abduction of two men found stabbed, bound, and beaten in the Schuylkill, in which another man who survived the attack was found stumbling along the riverbank, police said Monday. Police have said they believe the Aug. 28 killings were linked to Asian gangs. On Monday, law enforcement sources said murder charges had been filed against Tam Le, 42, who lived in a Southwest Philadelphia home where investigators believe the three victims were tortured before being stabbed, taken to the river, weighted down, and tossed into the water.
August 29, 2014 |
THE ABDUCTIONS of three men, two of whom were found in the wee hours yesterday butchered, bound, haphazardly tethered to makeshift anchors and sunk into the Schuylkill, remained shrouded in mystery last night. But one thing was clear: Somebody wanted them to suffer painful, gruesome deaths. All three men - who investigators said were targeted as a result of a "drug nexus" and may have ties to Asian gangs in Philadelphia - were bound with duct tape at their hands and feet, their faces covered, and were thrown into the dark waters off Kelly Drive, police said.
April 19, 2014 |
One man was killed and a second critically wounded in a shooting incident Thursday that involved the victims' being duct-taped over their eyes and around their wrists, Philadelphia police said. About 5:45 p.m., police responded to the 5600 block of Newtown Avenue in the Lawncrest section for reports of shootings, said Chief Inspector Scott Small. A 26-year-old man was found shot in the back, an arm, and a leg, and was transported by police to Einstein Medical Center, Small said. The second victim, a man in his 20s or 30s, was shot in the head, chest, and a leg, and was pronounced dead at the scene, Small said.
April 18, 2014 |
THE STRETCH OF Newtown Avenue near Godfrey seems the perfect place to disappear. The narrow, one-way thoroughfare is strewn with trash and shadowed by a thick cover of trees. No houses are nearby, only a few commercial properties and SEPTA train tracks. Yesterday, that remote stretch of pavement became the site of the latest brutal attack to rock Crescentville. Just before 6 p.m., officers found two men shot there, Chief Inspector Scott Small said. Duct tape covered their faces and bound their wrists.
September 7, 2013 |
Francis Zarzycki arrived at the dirty, three-room apartment near 11th and Locust Streets in Center City on an August night, believing he was in for a party with a pair of prostitutes known as Angel and Cinderella, police say. But the ladies' handler, a big guy named Keith Tolbert, whom Zarzycki had dealt with before, had a different plan, police say. They say Zarzycki, 40, who lived with his parents in Northeast Philadelphia, was carrying cash...
July 20, 2013 |
Nadirah Ruffin's killers forced her to kneel on a bank of the Schuylkill before shooting her to death and dumping her body in the river. That's what three defendants said Thursday in federal court in Camden as they pleaded guilty to their involvement in her death at 3 a.m. March 27, 2011. The three - Shameria Smith, 26; Aziz Sanders, 20; and Deshawn Hicks, 21 - pleaded guilty to a single count of a federal weapons violation, a charge that carries a potential maximum sentence of life imprisonment.