PHILADELPHIA, PA — Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner announced Attempted Murder and related firearm charges on Monday against Tarik Bey for his role in the retaliatory shooting of two male teenagers in the city’s Cobbs Creek section last year. Investigators believe Bey opened fire on these individuals in response to an earlier shooting, and that the shootings were tied to an ongoing feud between rival street groups. Bey’s case also underscores why the cash bail system frequently fails to improve public safety.
On April 7, 2020, Philadelphia Police responded to an apparent shooting at 5800 Angora Terrace. Two victims who had sustained non-fatal injuries were located. The defendant, meanwhile, was taken by an unidentified person or persons to the hospital with a gunshot wound to the head. The Philadelphia Police Department’s Southwest Detectives Division, in coordination with the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office Gun Violence Task Force (led by Assistant District Attorneys William Fritze and Helen Park) launched a meticulous investigation utilizing ballistic evidence from shell casings found at the crime scene, cell phone, Instagram, and other social media data.
Law enforcement concluded their investigation and obtained an arrest warrant on March 16, 2021. Bey, however, had fled Philadelphia and was later located and apprehended in Pottstown, PA by the U.S. Marshall’s Service before arraignment on October 6, 2021. During Bey’s bail hearing later that day, the Magistrate set the defendant’s bail at $175,000 — despite Assistant District Attorney Jeffrey Palmer arguing that Bey posed a danger to the community after attempting to take the lives of two people and that he should be held on $999,000. ADA Palmer then appealed the Magistrate’s bail decision to an emergency Municipal Court judge, who lowered the bail even further to a mere $50,000 (meaning that Bey would only have to pay less than $5,000 in order to be released from custody while awaiting trial).
The Commonwealth then rushed a request for an emergency stay order until a new bail hearing could convene before a Court of Common Pleas judge, but Bey was able to pay his bail and flee the state. A CP Court judge later revoked the defendant’s bail after being presented with additional social media evidence and testimony from law enforcement explaining why Bey posed a danger to the community and was a flight risk. Bey was again taken into custody.
“This defendant’s case is a stark example of why a money bail system simply fails to ensure public safety, particularly during a gun violence crisis that is being felt here in Philly and across our nation,” said DA Krasner. “Other jurisdictions, including Washington, D.C. and New Jersey, are seeing very good success with a cashless system. Rather than pursue baseless investigations into a presidential election that was conducted properly and won squarely, or attempt to impose more mandatory minimums that simply drive mass incarceration and do nothing to improve public safety, our state’s Republican-controlled legislature should be working to do away with a cash-based bail system. It’s the right thing to do for public safety. It’s the right thing to do if we truly want a more effective and fairer criminal justice system.”
“There is a crisis in our nation and a crisis in our city. But in particular, there is a crisis in Southwest Philadelphia. That crisis is gun violence,” said Rev. Sean Wise, Interim Pastor, The Catalyst Church. “The people in this community have dignity and they are worth fighting for. They deserve to live in peace and without a sense of fear for their lives. We are committed to working with the District Attorney and doing all we can to ensure that there is safety and justice in our streets and across our land.”
Bey is currently charged with two counts of Attempted Murder, two counts of Aggravated Assault, two counts of Reckless Endangerment, two counts of Simple Assault, and related firearm offenses. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for October 26, 2021.
Information is subject to change at any time. All suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
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