Skip to comments.Aspiring Teacher Shot and Killed in Robbery in Philadelphia (139th homicide this year)
Posted on 06/16/2008 5:43:44 AM PDT by Dr. Scarpetta
Beau Zabel, 23, came to Philadelphia from Minnesota six weeks ago, eager to experience urban East Coast living and to become a math teacher in the city school system. He found a place to live through roommates.com in South Philadelphia near the Italian Market, and took a temporary job at the Starbucks at Fourth and South Streets.
He recently updated his page on MySpace.com, which proclaims his optimism: "Just waiting for life to begin."
But his life ended about 1:30 a.m. yesterday, when police said Zabel was ambushed as he walked home from the midnight shift at the coffee shop. He was shot once in the neck in the 800 block of Ellsworth Street and fell to the sidewalk, police said.
He was pronounced dead at the scene.
The motive was robbery, said Sgt. Frank Hayes of the homicide squad. No arrests have been made.
"I thought I had to worry about him in the classroom, not on the streets," his mother, Lana Zamora, said by telephone yesterday from Austin, Minn. She was preparing to fly to Philadelphia.
Zamora said that she had driven her son here on May 2 and was assured by his new roommate that the neighborhood was safe. Now she is filled with disbelief and regret.
"Beau decided what he wanted to do," she said. "I raised my children to make their own decisions."
The second of three children, Zabel appeared to be a young man of great promise.
An Eagle Scout, he grew up in the small city of Austin near the Iowa border, where Hormel makes meat products and the city proudly proclaims itself "Spam Town USA." He graduated in 2007 from Augustana College, a liberal arts school in Rock Island, Ill., where he studied mathematics, Spanish, philosophy and computer science.
"He was a really good student," said Thomas Bengston, chairman of the Augustana math department, who described Zabel as good-natured and easy-going. "Things didn't get him down."
Zabel was attracted to teaching, but he did not have a degree in education. He was drawn to the Philadelphia Teaching Fellows program because he could teach in city public schools while getting his certification through Drexel University.
Zabel chose Philadelphia over a similar program in Chicago so he could be near an aunt who lives in Lancaster, Pa., Zamora said. He planned to have dinner on Friday with his cousin, she said.
On Ellsworth Street yesterday, neighborhood youths played basketball just a few feet from where the young man fell, oblivious to the stained sidewalk. Neighbors expressed shock that a violent crime had occurred on their quiet block, though some grumbled about the recent influx of immigrants as a signal that the neighborhood was changing.
Deena Burgase said she was wakened by the shot and immediately dismissed it as a problem with the utility lines - the electrical equipment had popped off recently. It was only after police arrived that Burgase understood that a young man had been killed across the narrow street from her rowhouse.
"I thought it was a transformer explosion," she said. "This is the first shooting in our neighborhood."
Police told neighbors that they would be studying any video of the area that night. There is a police camera on Washington Avenue, and Zabel is believed to have walked near the camera on his way home.
Sgt. Tim Cooney said that Zabel's pockets had been turned out but that he still had his personal effects, including his wallet. Police believe only one assailant was involved.
Zabel was the city's 139th homicide this year, compared with 181 by this time last year.
Zabel's mother got the word yesterday and was eager for any news. "We don't have a whole lot of murders up here," she said.
She was stoic in the way of the upper Midwest, but also numbed by the news. She works as a victim's advocate for a nonprofit organization but did not fully comprehend victimization until yesterday.
"I've worked with a lot of victims," she said. "It's different - a way different feeling - when you're the victim. I thought I would be angry, but right now I don't care what happens to the people who did this.
"It won't bring my son back."
An Eagle Scout, Beau Zabel grew up in the small city of Austin, Minn. near the Iowa border.
A very interesting statement about our public school systems.
How very Liberal of you. As long as you dont care then we can all expect more of the same.
I haven’t seen a description of the perp yet.
It’s tragic. That neighborhood had been one of the safest in the city. There’s even a community swimming pool nearby.
That's how I know he's black.
Perp took Obambi’s advice to bring a gun.
It sounds to me like no one has yet reported having seen the perp.
High probability of that, this being Philadelphia and all, but still ...
“I havent seen a description of the perp yet.”
Please enlighten as to how you even know there’s a witness to describe the perp.
“aspiring teacher shot and killed in robbery in philadelphia”
one guesses that they call it filthydelphia for good reason.
If they ever catch the perp I will bet my next paycheck that it is a repeat offender that some liberal judge let off a previous crime that would have put them behind bars where they belong.
“That’s how I know he’s black.”
Wow, you need to be a detective, seeing as it sounds like the police didn’t even have a description when this article was written. I’m completely astounded by your powers of deduction.
Actually, for Philadelphia, it is a fairly safe neighborhood. In 2007, there were only 3 homicides in that general area.
You and me both.
The left is always detached from reality. What’s scary is that they don’t even remember 9/11 and don’t believe that a nuclear 9/11 is coming.
Ok now the Dems are going to want to put a ban on StarBucks
Conservatives had better get off their asses and do something.
Actually, it’s a pretty safe bet. Just going from stats, a white person is something like 80 times more likely to be killed by a black person than the reverse.
Lynching a few leftie judges and ACLU pukes might be a good start.
Yes, it is a safe bet. Amazing how even some folks that post on FR have been infected with the PC virus.
“And how I know that this won’t be treated as a ‘hate crime’, either.”
A hate crime for what police think right now was a robbery?
Can you produce even one case where a white person who killed a black person in a simple robbery was charged with a hate crime? Even if that has happened, exactly why would you object if it means the scumbag is in prison longer?
“Actually, its a pretty safe bet. Just going from stats, a white person is something like 80 times more likely to be killed by a black person than the reverse.”
The question here isn’t whether a white person killed a black one, so comparing black on white to white on black means nothing at all. In fact, it means no more than the fact that when a black person kills somebody, the race of that person is OVERWHELMINGLY likely to be black.
Come on, you know as well as I do that the Revvvvvruund Jacksnnnnn, Al 'Slim Shady' Sharpton, and the rest of the poverty pimp mob would descend and demand hate-crime prosecution if there was any evidence that it was white-on-black. Remember Duke Lacrosse?
U.S. armed forces have suffered 189 deaths in Iraq, down from 559 (or 66.2%) for the same period last year...perhaps Patreus should run for Mayor of Philadelphia...
I didn’t care about what happened to the man who caused the accident that killed my son at the time of the incident. It was because of shock, grief, numbness. Give this woman a break, please, she’s just lost her son.
Please enlighten as to why you think I think theres a witness to describe the perp.
I can see where an ignoramus would be. How about just playing the odds. What fraction of murders and armed robberies in Philidelphia are committed by white youts 1%, 2%? I just hope grace is smarter.
As to the political overtones of this story, it is clear that Philidelphia and other large Eastern Cities like Detroit, Washington DC, etc. are all quagmires. The Mayors and Governors have lied to us from the get go going in there. [/dripping sarcasm]
I’m from Philly and after living there for over a decade growing up, I think it is EXTREMELY safe to say that the perp was black (MAYBE Latino.)
Also, I noticed in all my years there that it was always the white or Asian students or shopkeepers that were murdered during a robbery by black killers. It’s not that young black men don’t kill each other but it’s often in the course of the ‘Game’ of drug turf wars or the like.
The needless and cold-blooded slaughter of non-blacks nearly always seemed to me the result of vicious racism on the part of the criminal and the dehumanization of non-blacks in the inner city.
Disclosure: I am mixed race and some of the best people I ever met in Philly, including most of my life-long friends are black. That doesn’t change what I personally experienced and observed.
“Yes, it is a safe bet. Amazing how even some folks that post on FR have been infected with the PC virus.”
It’s not “PC” to be appalled by the alleged Freepers who emerge from the woodwork on every story that doesn’t mention race to blame the crime on blacks.
The reality is that the vast majority of stories with what turn out to be white perps ALSO don’t specifically mention race. In one of the shooting rampages in the past year or so (shopping mall, I think), some of the usual Freeper suspects jumped in with their speculations about a black being the perp because the media didn’t immediately mention race. Funny how they quietly disappeared from the thread when it turned out the shooter was a white Anglo-Saxon sort.
But then I guess since the media never did did ID the guy by race he must have been secretly black or just passin’. /s
There is a difference between understanding or stating that which is likely to be the case in the absence of specific information and stating as fact that which is not actually known. It is a matter of sticking to the known facts rather than being "infected with the PC virus".
Why would any sane white person go anywhere near Chicago or Philadelphia?
Sure it is but PC is so prevalent even among "conservatives" that we must say with unfettered certainty that the perp could "equally" be any race, creed or ethnicity. Of course anyone waiting for the MSM to forthcoming on these matters is not only naive but being lead around by the nose.
“Im from Philly and after living there for over a decade growing up, I think it is EXTREMELY safe to say that the perp was black (MAYBE Latino.)”
I would agree that the odds are strongly in favor of such. However, we have some Freepers who jump in on every crime thread where race isn’t mentioned to assure us that solely because race wasn’t mentioned, the perp has to be black. That’s what I object to.
Maybe it will turn out it wasn’t robbery, but a robber ain’t going to find any money in my wallet. I carry it in my pocket. If this guy did the same, then they got his money.
That may be true but Philadelphia has become a cesspool in the last few years. There used to be a only a few dangerous neighborhoods that nobody ventured into at night but now it's terrifying even to go into Center City.
If you can't be angry for yourself, at least have a little empathy for the prior and future victims of these animals.
“Can you produce even one case where a white person who killed a black person in a simple robbery was charged with a hate crime?
Come on, you know as well as I do that the Revvvvvruund Jacksnnnnn, Al ‘Slim Shady’ Sharpton, and the rest of the poverty pimp mob would descend and demand hate-crime prosecution if there was any evidence that it was white-on-black. Remember Duke Lacrosse?”
So your answer is “no?”
The Duke lacrosse case — which, based on outright lies, bad evidence and a liberal trying to get re-elected, did look like a possible racial incident at first — was nothing at all like what we’re talking about here.
Well, because you see lots of shady characters, but 99.9% of the time nothing happens. However, my question would be, who told him it would be safe to be walking home at 1:30 in the morning? Night time is gang time, especially in parks and schoolyards (they mentioned a community swimming pool). As I read here once, nothing good happens after midnight.
“I didnt care about what happened to the man who caused the accident that killed my son at the time of the incident. It was because of shock, grief, numbness. Give this woman a break, please, shes just lost her son.”
Sorry, but people who have just lost children are supposed to be thinking rationally and all their comments should fit conservative thought. Otherwise, they’re obviously just overly emotional liberals.
In all seriousness, I’m sorry about your son. Unfortunately, I’m well aware of the all-encompassing grief of losing a child suddenly. Totally rational thought is not possible.
The corect statistic is 12 times more likely than the reverse (this is even stated in "The Color of Crime") and a white person is 7 times more likely to be killed by another white person.