What to Know
- Three people, including 2 Mummers, died when a car slammed head on into their SUV along Packer Avenue in South Philadelphia early Wednesday.
- Police later discovered that the sedan driver, Keith Campbell, was stabbed 15 to 20 times and that he may have stabbed himself.
- Inside Campbell's wrecked car, investigators found a "rambling" note and a bloody knife, police said. He now faces homicide charges.
A man riddled with stab wounds who police say slammed his Audi head-on into an SUV filled with Mummers and their partners has been charged with homicide in the deadly crash.
The Philadelphia District Attorney's Office said Thursday that 29-year-old Keith Campbell was charged with three counts of homicide after the crash that happened along Packer Avenue early Wednesday morning.
The violent, high-speed collision killed the SUV's driver, Joseph Ferry, 36, of South Philadelphia; his fiancée Kelly Wiseley, 35, of Glenolden, Pennsylvania; and Dennis Palandro, 31, of Morton, Pennsylvania.
Palandro's 30-year-old wife survived the crash and is being treated at the hospital for a broken pelvis and other injuries, police said.
Ferry and Palandro helped the South Philadelphia String Band to a second-place finish in the annual Mummers Parade on New Year’s Day. They were headed to the Oregon Diner for a late-night bite when suddenly, police said, the suspect’s car crossed the median at high speed on Packer Avenue near S. 7th Street.
Campbell, whose chest and torso were covered in 15 to 20 stab wounds, is charged with three counts of homicide by vehicle and one count each of aggravated assault, reckless endangerment and possession of an instrument of crime.
The DA's office said they could file additional charges as the investigation progresses.
Police are probing whether Campbell was trying to kill himself and say the stab wounds appear to be self-inflicted. A knife was found in the front passenger side of his sedan. Overnight into Thursday, Police Chief Inspector Scott Small said investigators also found a rambling note inside the suspect’s car.
Campbell is expected to survive his injuries. Toxicology reports could reveal more about his state of mind at the time of the crash, Small said.
"It's highly unusual, I've never seen it before," accident division Capt. Mark Overwise said about the wreck.
Ferry and Wiseley had just become engaged on Christmas, Ferry's cousin, country music singer Payton Taylor, told NBC10. Palandro is the son of South Philadelphia String Band's captain.
"We are deeply saddened at the loss of our family members," the string band said on Facebook.
Wiseley worked as a bartender at Harrah's Philadelphia in Chester, according to her obituary. Her funeral for family and friends will be held next week in Springfield, Delaware County.
If you or someone you know needs help, call the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255 or text TALK to 741741.