District Attorney Krasner Announces Charges Following Deaths of Two Children in Separate Incidents
CONTACT: Jane Roh, 215–686–8711, Jane.Roh@phila.gov
PHILADELPHIA (May 28, 2020) — Following a spate of tragic violence that claimed the lives of two small children, District Attorney Larry Krasner on Thursday announced charges against two individuals for their roles in separate incidents.
Syiede Booker of Philadelphia (DOB: 09/18/1984) has been charged with Involuntary Manslaughter (F2, upgraded due to age of victim) following the shooting death of a 9-year-old boy in the Germantown section of the city on Tuesday night. This is the second violent death of a young child by an unsecured firearm in Philadelphia in five weeks.
“An investigation by the Philadelphia Police has determined that Syiede Booker not only left a deadly weapon out where this child and his young brother could easily find it, but that he initially lied to investigators about his role in this horrifically tragic and completely preventable shooting,” District Attorney Krasner said. “I cannot begin to imagine the heartbreak of this child’s mother, or the lifelong trauma of the 15-year-old who heard the deadly shot and found his young brother’s body. Kids and firearms do not belong anywhere near each other. I’m again urging Philadelphians with guns at home to keep them locked and out of reach of children.”
In addition to Involuntary Manslaughter, Booker faces two counts each of Endangering the Welfare of Children (F2; upgraded due to age of victim) and Recklessly Endangering Another Person (M2) on behalf of the deceased child and the surviving child. He also has been charged with Unsworn Falsification to Authorities (M2), Tampering with Evidence (M2), and Obstructing Justice (M2). Booker is being held on $1.1 million bail.
Residents of Philadelphia are required to safely store firearms in households where minors also reside. Free gun locks are available by mail — no questions asked — by submitting a request to Temple Safety Net.
In the second incident, a 3-year-old child was killed and six other people injured after a woman driving under the influence and at a high rate of speed caused multiple vehicles including a SEPTA bus to crash in the Mayfair section of the city on Wednesday evening. Brionna Wright (DOB: 10/28/1991) of Montgomery County will be charged with Third Degree Murder (F1), Homicide by Vehicle while Driving Under the Influence (DUI) (F2), Homicide by Vehicle (F3), Involuntary Manslaughter (M1), Accidents Involving Death (F2), DUI (M), Recklessly Endangering Another Person (M2), and Resisting Arrest (M2).
“This incident in Mayfair was another completely preventable tragedy that culminated in the violent death of a toddler,” District Attorney Krasner continued. “Motor vehicle injuries are a leading cause of death for children in the United States. Road safety is public safety, period.”
For injuries caused to six drivers and passengers in other vehicles, Wright will also be charged with Aggravated Assault by Vehicle While DUI (F2), Aggravated Assault by Vehicle (F3), three counts of Accidents Involving Injury (M1), five counts of Simple Assault (M2), and an additional six counts of Recklessly Endangering Another Person (M2).
District Attorney Krasner added: “Just as we are wearing masks to protect others from COVID-19 infection, so should we consider the safety of others every time we get behind the wheel. I urge Philadelphians not to confuse emptier streets and fewer pedestrians with license to speed or drive while intoxicated.”
The Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office is the largest prosecutor’s office in Pennsylvania, and one of the largest in the nation. It serves the more than 1.5 million citizens of the City and County of Philadelphia, employing 600 lawyers, detectives, and support staff. The District Attorney’s Office is responsible for prosecution of approximately 40,000 criminal cases annually.