One of the brothers charged in the death of 38-year-old Philadelphia dad Gerard Grandzol has been sentenced to 25 to 50 years in prison, the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office confirmed Friday.
He pleaded guilty to 3rd-degree murder, robbery and conspiracy for the 2017 shooting.
His younger brother, Marvin Roberts, is believed to have pulled the trigger, according to law enforcement officials. He remains jailed.
“This was a truly senseless tragedy and our hearts go out to Mr. Grandzol's family, as well as the Spring Garden and Fairmount community that he faithfully served,” a spokesman for the district attorney’s office said in a statement.
Grandzol was killed Sept. 7 outside his home on the 1500 block of Melon Street near Fairmount Avenue. He had just pulled up to a parking spot when the brothers approached him and attempted to steal his car, officials said. He pleaded with the brothers to first retrieve his 2-year-daughter from the backseat.
Instead, he was shot twice in the head, officials said.
Grandzol's death gained considerable attention, in part because of the father’s well-known community activism. His widow also publicly expressed frustration that the younger Roberts, who was 16 years old at the time of the shooting, could be tried as a juvenile.
But Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner refuted the claim and filed a motion in support of charging the teen as an adult.
"This was absolutely a heinous crime," Krasner said at the time. "This is a case that belongs in adult court."