Philadelphia police are working to catch the killer of Samuel Sean Collington, a political science student at Temple University just months after graduating. shot off campus in North Philadelphia Sunday afternoon after he returns from Thanksgiving break.
On Tuesday, police told NBC10’s Steven Fisher that they were investigating a person of interest in the murder of a 21-year-old Delaware County native, which was captured on surveillance video. Investigators believe the person was involved in other crimes in North Philadelphia.
Collington, of Prospect Park, Pennsylvania, was shot in the chest outside his college apartment in the 2200 block of North Park Avenue around 1:30 p.m. Sunday. The city’s district attorney’s office on Monday said Collington was shot four or five times.
His mother, Molly Collington, said her son had just returned to North Philadelphia from his home in Delaware County with clean laundry from a long holiday weekend.
She called her son’s murder a “terrible injustice” and a “farce like you know nothing” in an interview with NBC10. She also said that she would do anything to bring those responsible to justice.
A local family and student community are mourning the death of Sam Collington, a 21-year-old Temple student. His mother is speaking out and saying she wants justice for her son. NBC10’s Steven Fisher has the story.
Molly Collington said on Monday: “This senseless act has crushed us.
Police did not provide a motive for the shooting, but the DA office said Monday in a weekly update on gun violence that video evidence suggests Collington was shot during a carjacking or robbery. .
The DA’s office said Collington showed up to fight back, but that was after he had been shot. Officials added video evidence is still being examined.
Collington was taken to Temple University Hospital, where he was pronounced dead a short time later. No weapons were recovered.
Police on Tuesday have yet to name anyone interested in Collington’s murder.
Collington is a senior political science student at Temple, the university said. He will graduate in the spring from the College of Liberal Arts.
A school spokesman wrote: “This is a tragedy.
Loved ones are mourning a 21-year-old Temple University student and a 16-year-old boy, both of whom were fatally shot in North Philadelphia on Sunday. NBC10’s Danny Freeman spoke with the Temple student’s mother.
Collington is also a member of the City Commissioner’s office.
“Samuel is an incredibly talented and passionate young man,” wrote City Councilor Omar Sabir. “During his brief stint in our office, Samuel displayed an incredible passion for voter engagement and was an integral member of our team. Sam’s death is a huge loss to the City Commissioners and everyone who knew him.”
The shooting happened just a few blocks from the Temple grounds. Neighbors told NBC10 that several Temple students lived in the area.
Kendall Stephens, a Temple student and friend of Collington, told NBC10 Collington cares deeply about his community and is fighting to end the same violence that took his life.
“This should never have happened to anyone,” Stephens said. “But especially someone who really cares about the neighborhood around. That’s the very tragic thing about all of this.”
Stephens said Collington’s advocacy has extended to Harrisburg.
Stephens said: “He was on fire. “The way he’s been able to talk to senators and build that political connection and be able to reach across the aisle in a very nonpartisan way. That’s fascinating.”
Robin Kolodny, the dean of Temple’s political science department, also said Collington was not a typical student.
“It’s not something a lot of college students would do,” Kolodny told NBC10. “As we learn more about Sam, I hope people will follow his example.”
So far, this year has had at least 508 murders in Philadelphia, making 2021 the deadliest year on record in the city.
“There’s been a lot of talk about whether we should have more police,” Kolodny said. “His friends are very clear that it’s not something Sam is going to champion.”
In a block from where Collington was killed, there have been four other armed robberies in the last month, including three at the same time of day.
“They are acting out of desperation,” says Stephens. “They’re acting out of hope. And those are the fundamental ingredients that cause the violence. So we’re trying to give hope back to these communities.”
A spokesman for the Mayor’s Office said: “We are deeply saddened by the death of Samuel Collington and strongly condemn this and any act of violence in our city.” “We grieve for every life lost to the violence, and we grieve for Samuel’s friends and family as they come to terms with this unimaginable loss. Our thoughts are with each other. with his loved ones, the Temple University community, and his colleagues in the Office of the City Commissioner.”
Mayor Jim Kenney called the Collington murder a terrible case of “bad things happen to good people.”
“There is evil in this world,” Kenney said of the murder, adding that the shooter needed to be caught and jailed for the rest of his life.
If you have any information about the shooting, please call Philadelphia Police at 215-686-TIPS (8477).
There are additional resources for people or communities who have experienced gun violence in Philadelphia. Detailed information can be found here.
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