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‘This Wasn’t a Random Act’: 88-Year-Old Air Force Veteran Murdered in Philadelphia While Sitting in His Car, Family Says

88-Year-Old Air Force Vet Fatally Shot While Sitting Inside Car: Cops
Source: Mega

Richard Butler, 88, was fatally shot while sitting inside his car in Philadelphia and police continue to search for suspect, officials said.

Mar. 7 2024, Published 2:00 p.m. ET

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Law enforcement officials said an 88-year-old grandfather and US Air Force veteran was fatally shot while sitting inside his car as part of his everyday routine in West Philadelphia.

Around 1:30 p.m. on March 5, Richard Butler was shot in the chest twice after he dropped his girlfriend off at home, according to court documents obtained by WPVI-TV.

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After Butler was shot, he attempted to drive his vehicle away, but the car came to a stop on a sidewalk after knocking over a potted plant, officials said.

Butler’s family members told WPVI that the suspect was sitting inside a parked silver sedan at a nearby intersection before Butler pulled onto the street.

Surveillance footage reportedly shows the suspect jumping out of the sedan and running up to the elderly man’s vehicle and firing the shots.

“Broad daylight, he was out doing his normal routine. Goes to the park everyday, stops at Wawa,” Butler’s great niece Minette Finn told WPVI. “In his car, defenseless. You waited for him. You waited for this man. This wasn’t a random act.”

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Butler was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead, authorities said.

Family members told WPVI that Butler was the patriarch of his family, but was also a huge part of the community. He served in the Air Force and was a retired SEPTA driver.

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“Pops. Dad. Uncle. Brother to everyone,” Finn said. “If you met him, you loved him. That’s all I’m going to say. Anyone in this neighborhood could tell you probably.”

Butler’s son, Orlando Butler, told WCAU, “He’s been an outstanding citizen in the community. Took care of all the kids from the block. For this to happen to my father, this is truly a sad situation.”

Anyone with information on the case is urged to contact police at (215) 686-TIPS.


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