HomeCrimeTeenager in custody after Rhawnhurst killing

Teenager in custody after Rhawnhurst killing

A 14-year-old girl captured in surveillance video released by police surrendered to authorities Thursday night.

Surveillance image released by police

Update (11/8): A 14-year-old teenage girl is in custody in connection with the killing. Police have not released her name, and she has yet to be charged. 

The girl is the person captured in video from inside Chernoff’s Rhawnhurst home, Acting Police Commissioner Christine Coulter told reporters in a video uploaded to FOX29.com

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It remains unclear why the girl was at Chernoff’s house. She turned herself in Thursday night accompanied by attorneys.  

Investigators on Wednesday released a video of a person wanted in connection to the murder of a man inside his Rhawnhurst home.

Al Chernoff, 59, a prominent member of the local animal rescue community, was found early Tuesday morning partially tied to his bed with a massive head wound and several slashes to his chest inside his house on the 8400 block of Algon Avenue. 

Police described the suspect as a tall person with a medium build, medium brown complexion and short black hair. The person was wearing a black jacket, long-sleeve pink shirt, red loose-fitting sweatpants and white athletic shoes, and was carrying a black backpack, authorities said.

Investigators did not specify the gender of the suspect, and it’s unclear from the video, which appears to be from a surveillance camera inside Chernoff’s home.

A police source said detectives are looking into whether the suspect was an escort or a prostitute. Neighbors told authorities Chernoff often had people over they believed to be sex workers, according to the source.

Officers were called to Chernoff’s home around 3 a.m. Tuesday by a neighbor reporting a man in distress. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Anyone with information about the suspect or the killing is asked to contact the Homicide Division at 215-686-3334/3335. All tips will be confidential. 

A $20,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the suspect’s arrest and conviction. ••

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