Murder charges filed against Philly teens for killing of dog walker

PHILADELPHIA -- Police have announced charges against two 15-year-old boys in the murder of James Stuhlman, who was shot and killed while walking his dog in Philadelphia's Overbrook section last week.

One of those boys remains and large, and is considered by police to be armed and dangerous.

Police say they have in custody 15-year-old Brandon Smith. He has been charged with murder, robbery and related charges.

A warrant has been issued for 15-year-old Tyfine Hamilton - the alleged gunman. Hamilton is also charged with murder, robbery, and related offenses.

Lesser charges are expected to be filed against a third boy, who is 14-years-old.

Tyfine Hamilton, of the 2100 block of North Wannamaker Street, is a freshman at Overbrook High School. Police are asking anyone with information on his whereabouts to dial 911 or contact Philadelphia Police.

It was just before 8:30 p.m. last Thursday when 51-year-old James Stuhlman was walking his dog on the 6400 block of Woodcrest Avenue. He was approached by three juveniles attempting a robbery.

Police say Stuhlman pleaded for his life, saying, "Please don't shoot me. Please don't shoot me." But he was still shot once in the chest.

The suspects ran off, without taking any of Stuhlman's belongings.

"Which makes this even more senseless, and even more troubling," said Philadelphia Police Capt. James Clark, "that nothing was taken at all and he lost his life."

Police have surveillance of the suspects. They say they were all wearing hoodies and backpacks, and that led police to believe they were likely high school students.

Then Wednesday afternoon while patrolling the area officers observed a group of boys fitting the same description. The officers attempted to stop the boys, but they took off. A foot pursuit ensued and they were quickly apprehended.

Police later searched the home where two of the boys live at 64th Street and Girard Avenue. Inside, they recovered numerous assault rifles and hand guns.

As a result of interviews with the teens, charges were filed against Hamilton and Smith.

The boys allegedly told police that they were out playing basketball, and afterwards, they came up with the idea that they wanted to commit a robbery.

As they walked down the street, they initially targeted another man, police said. However, they then saw Stuhlman, who was older than the first man and was walking a dog who they considered less intimidating.

Clark says as they pulled out their gun and announced a robbery, there was a struggle, and Stuhlman was shot once in the chest.

Neighbors tell us Stuhlman, a landscaper, usually walks the dog at night with his 13-year-old daughter.

That night he was walking alone.

"My understanding is that his daughter goes for a walk with him almost every night," Clark said. "For whatever reason he said to her, 'It's a little late tonight. I don't want you walking with me.' So in effect, he possibly saved his daughter's life as well."

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