1 of 3 suspects arrested in attacks on seniors in Philly, viewers credited

NORTHEAST PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Action News viewers are being credited with helping Philadelphia police identify three suspects wanted in connection to the assault and robbery of senior citizens.

"We were inundated with tips from the public, via the internet and phone and they steered us right in the right direction," Philadelphia Police Lt. Dennis Rosenbaum said.

One of the suspects, 43-year-old Keith Perkins, turned himself in after a warrant was issued for his arrest.

Two others being sought have been identified as 52-year-old Ronald Singleton, aka Eric Wilson, and 28-year-old Joseph Donaldson.

Police say Donaldson is the one who was wearing the Superman t-shirt in the surveillance footage.

Police say they are the ones who targeted 83-year-old Bayard Stonehill, a victim who is recovering from throat cancer.

"I always knew there were a lot of good people, but I never realized they were that caring and that's wonderful," Stonehill said.

Police say they have also recovered the two vehicles being sought in connection with the assault and robberies which began last April.

Authorities say the men targeted 11 victims and all, except one of them, are seniors. The oldest victim is 96.

Police believe the culprits would follow the victims in their banks. Stand behind them and listen to see if they were withdrawing substantial sums of money. They would follow and assault the victims, then take the money.

"They're followed home and accosted and sometimes beaten, sometimes just pushed over, sometimes the money is just grabbed," said Lt. Rosenbaum.

In the case of Stonehill, he had just left the PFCU Bank on Roosevelt Boulevard and had driver next door to Gallo's Seafood to order takeout.

That's when Stonehill says a man opened his passenger door, grabbed the envelope with cash and fled.

They took $1,000 from Stonehill which set him back on his bills.

Some viewers have called offering money, although Stonehill is embarrassed about taking handouts.

"I feel funny doing that, but I appreciate their offers," Stonehill said.

Stonehilll does say he will rest a lot easier when all three men are behind bars.

"That makes me feel so much better, it really does. They won't bother any other older people," Stonehill said with a laugh.

Police have a message for the two other men being sought- turn yourself in.

Late Tuesday night, police tell Action News one of the victims, an 85-year-old man, has since died. The medical examiner has not yet determined if the man died due to injuries suffered in the attack. If that turns out to be the case, this could turn into a homicide investigation.

Anyone who does know the whereabouts of Ronald Singleton (Eric Wilson) and Joseph Donaldson is being asked to call 911.

Police say Singleton had already served time in prison for committing this crime in the past.
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