The mother of a man who was shot and killed after he allegedly tried to rob a Bucks County pizza shop as well as the girlfriend of the slain suspect's brother were arrested for their alleged roles in the attempted robbery.
Robin Soto, 52, of Levittown, and Chasidy Ramos, 25, were both arrested and charged with robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery. Police say both women staked out Porfirio's Pizza and Pasta restaurant in a shopping center on the 900 block of Veteran Highway in Levittown back on November 15.
The two women entered the pizzeria shortly before 10 p.m. that night to determine how many workers and customers were inside, according to investigators. Soto also allegedly asked the co-owner of the restaurant what time his business closed before stepping outside with Ramos.
Police say Soto then told her sons Justin Rose, 22, who is also Ramos' boyfriend, and Shawn Rose, 24, the number of people inside. The brothers then entered the shop minutes later while carrying realistic-looking airsoft guns, according to Bucks County District Attorney Matt Weintraub.
"They had the security feature, that orange tip, removed so that they looked and felt like real guns," said Weintraub.
Three people, including the owner and a customer who had stopped in to pick up some food on his way home, were inside the restaurant at the time, said police.
The two brothers, who were wearing dark clothing, gloves and bandannas over their faces, pointed their fake weapons at the customer as well as the shop owner, officials said. They then ordered the customer and owner to, "give us all your s***," according to investigators. During the robbery, Justin Rose remained on the phone with Soto and Ramos, officials said.
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Shawn Rose allegedly pistol-whipped the customer in the forehead causing him to drop down to one knee. As Shawn Rose looked away for a moment, the customer pulled out his own .45 caliber handgun from his jacket and fired one shot, striking him in the torso, officials said.
Officials said the customer then fired two shots at Justin Rose, striking him in the throat and shoulder area. Justin Rose fell through the door of the store. The customer then aimed his weapon at the two brothers until police arrived.
Shawn Rose died from his injuries. Justin Rose was taken to St. Mary Medical Center and was then airlifted to Thomas Jefferson Hospital in Philadelphia where he was listed in critical but stable condition. He is charged with conspiracy to commit robbery, simple assault by physical menace and recklessly endangering another person.
Police say Soto and Ramos went to the Middletown Township Police Department several hours after the robbery and asked about the conditions of the two suspects. The co-owner of Porfirio's then identified them as the women who had entered his business minutes before the robbery.
Investigators obtained surveillance video, which they said shows both the pistol-whipping and the shooting. They are not releasing it at this time however as the investigation continues.
The armed customer was not charged.
"The shooting was a justifiable homicide," Weintraub said. "The shooter is not being charged in this incident."
Weintraub said the customer could have been charged however because he had an expired permit to carry a concealed weapon. They decided not to charge him "based on the totality of the circumstances."
"It was only months after his grace period for the renewal of that permit that ended," Weintraub said. "He legally could have renewed his permit at any time and I want to emphasize that he should have renewed his permit to carry that concealed weapon. He was the victim of a robbery however and a pistol-whipping and that factored heavily into our decision."
Weintraub did not identify the shooter but described him as a "lifelong, law-abiding citizen and a business owner who had the gun for his own protection."
"If he had possessed the gun out in the open he wouldn't have even needed a permit to carry at all," Weintraub said. "Most importantly he used that gun to save his own life and the life of the intended victim, the pizza shop owner."
Soto and Ramos were arraigned Tuesday night. Their bail is set at $2 million, 10 percent cash. Justin Rose will be processed after his release from the hospital.
A preliminary hearing for the suspects is tentatively scheduled for November 30.