Arrests made in 85-year-old woman's death

August 6, 2009 5:04:08 AM PDT
Two arrests have been made in the murder of an 85-year-old Delaware County woman found dead in her home.It didn't take Yeadon police long to wrap up this homicide case. Investigators say the accused killers knew their 85-year-old victim very well. One was the victim's great nephew and the other is his girlfriend.

"She agreed to take them in, provide some living space, provide some financial support for them and it came to this. Her death is a result of that," Chief Donald Molindux of the Yeadon Police said.

Yeadon Police escorted the accused killers into a courthouse for an arraignment this afternoon. Investigators saying the drug-addicted parents of a 2-year-old confessed to their crimes.

"This poor, 85-year-old woman who was well-known in our community was brutally beaten," Chief Molindux said.

22-year-old Krystal Mariano nor 27-year-old David Galdo, the great nephew of 85-year-old Rita Hreha, said nothing to reporters.

A family friend told Action News Hreha was the only relative who agreed to take Galdo in when he was released from a Delaware County prison just two months ago. According to that friend, Galdo's crime was stealing $1,800 from his elderly aunt then, but yesterday Hreha apparently stood up to her great nephew by refusing his demand for drug money.

"Apparently, the victim in this case wouldn't give that money up, and apparently a verbal argument escalated into a brutal beating," Chief Molindux said.

Hreha was found dead on her kitchen floor by a concerned relative. Police immediately named Galdo as a suspect; he and his girlfriend were located in Philadelphia late yesterday with Hreha's credit cards and checks.

Neighbors say she will be missed.

"Very, very quiet [and] lovely person," Reverend Clyde Henry said.

"She was a strong, independent, little woman, and it's a shame," Jacqueline Crawford said.

Police say the two suspects confessed. Their child is said to be with his grandmother.