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Food and a Cab Ride Lead to Two Pennsylvania Murders

While there’s obviously never a “good” reason for murder, some motives are perhaps easier to comprehend than others.  In unrelated cases, two men will face murder charges in Pennsylvania…  Because of cab directions, and a plate of  food.

Taxi Philly - Food and a Cab Ride Lead to Two Pennsylvania Murders

Teenager Facing Murder Charges After Shooting Taxi Driver

16-year-old Aazis Richardson of Newark is facing first, second, and third degree murder charges following the fatal shooting of Scranton cab driver Vincent Darbenzio.  When questioned about what triggered the event, Richardson told investigators, “I didn’t say **** to him, I just told him take this way, he didn’t want to listen.”  Specifically, Richardson felt Darbenzio was “taking the long way and ripping him off.”  After shooting the driver — who had only been working for McCarthy Flowered Cab for about a month — Richardson stole $500.

Darbenzio was discovered dead with two bullet wounds to the head.

Despite his young age, Bloods gang member Richardson will be tried for a laundry list of felony offenses, including murder and robbery.  Yet the defendant himself seems unfazed by the events ahead of him — and behind him.

“I feel my homies die, everybody got to die,” he said when asked if he felt remorse.

When asked about Darbenzio’s family, Richardson’s reply was blunt: “**** them.”

According to Chief Carl Graziano, “…This particular defendant exceeds all measurable levels of coldness.”

Richardson’s preliminary hearing will take place on Friday.

Plated Food - Food and a Cab Ride Lead to Two Pennsylvania Murders

Elderly Man Shoots Neighbor for “Mooching” Food

Meanwhile in Rochester Mills of Grant Township, a dispute between neighbors escalated into a deadly shooting.  But the trigger wasn’t the expected argument about encroaching hedges, or unleashed dogs.  It was a plate of food.

59-year-old James Buterbaugh may rely on a walker to get around, but this elderly Indiana County resident has nonetheless been connected with the fatal shooting of 51-year-old neighbor David Ackerson.

Buterbaugh accused Ackerson of “mooching” after two plates of food were given to Ackerson by Buterbaugh’s mother.  Angered, Buterbaugh left the scene, only to be pursued by his soon-to-be victim.  When Ackerson caught up with his neighbor, Buterbaugh threatened him.

“Go ahead and shoot me,” Ackerson reportedly countered.

Shockingly, that appears to be precisely what happened.

In addition to murder, Buterbaugh will be charged with simple assault, aggravated assault, and reckless endangerment.  These two forms of assault are differentiated from one another based on the degree of physical harm caused, as well as intent. While simple assault involves relatively minor injuries (or an injury from a weapon inflicted negligently), aggravated assault involves serious physical damage (or an injury from a weapon inflicted intentionally), and is treated as a felony.

“You want to talk about a senseless killing?” Indiana County D.A. Patrick Dougherty asks rhetorically.  “The ironic thing was she made a plate of food for the defendant and one for the victim, for some reason that didn’t sit well with the defendant.”

Buterbaugh is currently being held in county jail.

If you or someone you love is facing charges of assault, robbery, or other crimes, you could be facing a hefty fine and a lengthy prison sentence.  You need an experienced defense attorney on your side.  To schedule your free, completely confidential legal consultation, call the law offices of Young, Marr & Associates at (609) 755-3115 in New Jersey or (215) 701-6519 in Pennsylvania today, or contact us online.



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Commonwealth v. "H" (DUI case)

Client was charged with three separate DUI cases calling for mandatory minimum imprisonment of 90 days on each case. Client was advised to seek immediate intensive alcohol counseling. Client was sentenced to 1 year of house arrest after serving 3 days in the county prison.


Commonwealth v. "C" (Felony drug/Firearms case)

Client was charged with felony Delivery of drugs and illegal gun possession and was facing a mandatory 3-6 year prison sentence in the State prison system. Client was sentenced to one year of house arrest.


Commonwealth v. "S"

Client was charged with simple assault, domestic. After a hearing where evidence and testimony was presented, the entire case was dismissed by Judge Leonard Brown.


State of New Jersey v. "H"

Charges for young man charged with second degree aggravated assault were downgraded to third degree and he was accepted into the County Pretrial Intervention program with charges to be dismissed and record expunged after one year of misconduct free behavior.


We have decades of experience dealing with local police departments, prosecutors, and judges throughout southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Anyone facing charges involving a criminal offense can expect to experience a heightened degree of emotional turmoil, for themselves, as well as their family members. Our team of highly qualified criminal law attorneys and expert legal support staff are committed to providing each of our client’s with the compassion and understanding they deserve, as well as an aggressive plan for representation at an affordable price.

As former prosecutors, we have a balanced and in-depth understanding of the criminal justice system and how the prosecution prepares cases. In addition, we have long-standing experience dealing with local police departments, prosecutors and judges throughout southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

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