anticipated in killing
By Thomas J. Gibbons Jr.
INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The operator of an Overbrook Park bakery is not
expected to face charges in the fatal shooting of a teenager who tried to rob
him shortly after he left his shop late Thursday night, authorities said.
Jan M. Moskow, 47, was walking home from Best
Cake Bakery at 7594 Haverford Ave. about 11 p.m. when Raheem Stewart, 18,
approached him near an alley behind Haverford Avenue, pulled a semiautomatic
pistol, and announced a holdup, police said.
"Our victim, while backing up, had his
hands in the air," said Capt. James Brady. "He was further menaced by
that weapon. He felt threatened, felt his life was in danger, as he tells us.
"He pulled a weapon, which he was licensed
to carry, and shot the perpetrator twice, killing him," said Brady,
commander of the Homicide Division. One slug hit Stewart in the head. The other
struck him in a shoulder.
George Agostini, 74, was watching television in
his Overbrook Avenue residence when two shots rang out.
"I thought maybe it was a thunderstorm or
car backfiring," Agostini said.
Then, he said, he looked out his rear window
and saw a commotion and the teen collapsed on a concrete parking area below, a
popular spot for neighborhood youths to congregate.
"He was gone right away. His gun was in
front of his foot," Agostini said. "It wasn't too big of a gun."
The spot where the shooting occurred - a
parking area off an alley that connects the 7500 blocks of Overbrook Avenue and
Greenhill Road - is behind a row of stores on Haverford Avenue.
Agostini said teens often congregated in an
abandoned car that had been there for several months. The car was towed away
later yesterday, passing a large bloodstain that marked the shooting site.
"I hope now with this car out of here,
that will end," said Agostini of the trouble the teens often caused at the
Detectives said Moskow was heading for his
house several blocks away when the confrontation occurred. Efforts to reach him
there and at the bakery were unsuccessful.
Brady said Moskow was issued a permit to carry
his firearm, a 9mm semiautomatic pistol, about five years ago.
The weapon was legally registered, Brady said.
Moskow was questioned through the morning at
Police Headquarters, then released.
"A review of the case indicates
self-defense, and absent additional facts or information, I shouldn't anticipate
any charges being filed in this case," said Brady, addressing reporters
outside Police Headquarters.
A final determination will be made by the
District Attorney's Office.
Investigators also will be showing mug shots of
Stewart - he had a criminal record that included arrests for burglary and arson
- to victims of some previous crimes in the neighborhood.
"There are robberies in the area that
we're looking at," Brady said. "Some have striking similarities, so
we're going to take a look at that and see if, in fact, he was involved."
Stewart lived several blocks away from where
the shooting occurred.
His home was in the 7600 block of Wyndale
Avenue, a street of rowhouses that dead-ends at a section of Fairmount Park.
"He was quiet, real quiet," said
Kiyon Harvey, 18, of the 1300 block of Farrington Road in the neighborhood.
Harvey said Stewart liked to hang out in a
bowling alley off nearby City Avenue, where he played video games.
"When I found out what happened, I was
shocked," Harvey said, adding that Stewart had attended the Lamberton
School at 75th Street and Woodbine Avenue.
Other youths who said they knew Stewart stopped
yesterday to stare at the spot where he died.
Someone had placed a pair of black Nike
sneakers on the spot, saying the shoes had belonged to the teenager. Later, a
discarded backpack was left there.
Diran Peretz, 18, of the 7300 block of Sherwood
Road, said he occasionally played video games with Stewart at the bowling alley.
"He was not a friend, but an
associate," Peretz said.
"I would say 'hi' to him. Give him mutual
Thomas J. Gibbons Jr.'s e-mail address is
© 2000 Philadelphia Newspapers Inc.
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