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.
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“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."