King of Prussia

Man Arrested in Shooting of Pregnant Ex in King of Prussia

'This was a chilling murder of a young woman and her unborn child,' Montgomery County District Kevin Steele said

NBC Universal, Inc.

Police have arrested a man suspected of killing his pregnant ex-girlfriend in King of Prussia.

Rafiq Thompson, 38, of Philadelphia turned himself in to police Wednesday morning, the Montgomery County District Attorney's Office said.

He's charged with first-degree murder and related charges in the death of Tamara Cornelius. The 31-year-old woman was pumping gas when she was shot multiple times.

Additional charges are expected to be filed, a spokeswoman for the Montgomery County DA said, given that Cornelius was pregnant when she was killed.

"This was a chilling murder of a young woman and her unborn child," Steele said. "We will be filing an additional homicide charge against the defendant—Murder of an Unborn Child."

Cornelius' family said she was also a mother of three other children.

Detectives determined that Thompson and Cornelius had a previous relationship and met up briefly around 9:11 p.m. before Cornelius went inside The Cheesecake Factory restaurant to eat dinner, the DA’s office said.

Cornelius left the restaurant a little over an hour later and was followed by Thompson as she drove to the gas station, prosecutors said. As Cornelius pumped gas, Thompson spoke with her and then opened fire, the DA’s office said. A police affidavit said witnesses heard a brief argument before shots were fired.

He continued to shoot her as she tried to run away, the DA’s office added. Cornelius was declared dead at Paoli Hospital at 11:09 p.m., 47 minutes after police officers first responded to the gas station and found her bleeding, prosecutors said.

Contact Us