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Originally published May 24, 2014 at 9:50 AM | Page modified May 24, 2014 at 5:33 PM

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Police: Teen killed cabbie for rejecting his route

A 16-year-old who believed he was being ripped off shot and killed a northeastern Pennsylvania cab driver who refused to take his shortcuts, police said.


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SCRANTON, Pa. —

A 16-year-old who believed he was being ripped off shot and killed a northeastern Pennsylvania cab driver who refused to take his shortcuts, police said.

Aazis Richardson was charged with murder Friday night, hours after police said he shot 47-year-old Vincent Darbenzio twice in the head. The cab driver's body was found in his vehicle shortly before 5 a.m. near the entrance to a Scranton housing complex.

"Richardson said he got upset because the cab driver was taking the long way and ripping him off," police wrote in a criminal complaint posted online by The Times-Tribune of Scranton (http://bit.ly/1nD313D). The complaint said Richardson told investigators the driver kept taking a longer route even after being told shortcuts.

Richardson told police he became angry and shot Darbenzio after telling him to pull over, according to the complaint.

While in police custody, Richardson told reporters he had killed the driver because he wouldn't take his preferred route. Asked if being ripped off was reason to kill someone, Richardson replied, "To me, it is."

Investigators said they traced the cellphone call that requested the cab to a home next door to one Richardson frequented. Richardson was arrested after police said they found him hiding in the shared attic. A handgun was also recovered.

The woman who placed the call told police she did not know Richardson but called the cab for him because he said he did not have a phone.

It's not clear if Richardson had an attorney.

Darbenzio started working for the cab company last month.



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