14-year-old charged with murder in killing of Philadelphia employee at playground

Sep 14, 2022, 7:00 AM
A 14-year-old boy has been charged with murder in connection with the shooting death of a woman at the Philadelphia playground where she worked, city officials confirm. Stock image via Shutterstock
(CNN) — A 14-year-old boy has been charged with murder in connection with the shooting death of a woman at the Philadelphia playground where she worked, city officials confirm.

The teenager was charged with murder and other offenses related to the Friday shooting of Parks and Recreation employee Tiffany Fletcher at the Mill Creek Recreation Center in West Philadelphia, Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said.

District Attorney Larry Krasner confirmed that the 14-year-old is being charged as an adult, but officials did not disclose the boy’s name during a news conference on Monday.

CNN has reached out to the Defender Association of Philadelphia to determine whether they are representing the teenager.

Outlaw said officers heard multiple gunshots on Friday around 1:30 p.m. in the area of the recreation center and saw people running from the playground when they responded to the scene.

The 14-year-old boy was arrested after a brief chase, and a 9mm “ghost gun” was recovered in a nearby trash can, Outlaw said.

Police said Fletcher, 40, was “caught in the crossfire” of a shootout with the 14-year-old and at least one other individual. After she was shot, Fletcher ran to an area business where workers attempted to tend to her wounds. Officers transported Fletcher to a nearby hospital, but she died later that evening, Outlaw said.

Authorities also found 12 fired shell casings at the scene. It’s still unknown what led to the shootout and authorities are still searching for other suspects involved.

Victim stepped up when city faced staff shortage, commissioner said

Fletcher agreed in the spring to work as a pool maintenance attendant when the city, like many others, was facing a shortage of staff at its pools, and agreed to stay on at Mill Creek Recreation Center after the pool season ended, according to Parks and Recreation Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell, who called Fletcher “a beloved member of the staff.”

“Tiffany answered the call each day to serve children and families in her community and to make her three children and her family proud,” Ott Lovell said.

The recreation center had just opened at 1 p.m. that day. Four other employees were present at the center when the shooting took place, according to Ott Lovell.

“Words alone cannot express the outrage, hurt, and sadness that all of us feel. Dedicated, passionate, and driven — Tiffany Fletcher was just doing her job outside Mill Creek Rec Center in West Philadelphia when — in a brazen and unconscionable act of violence — she was struck by crossfire in the middle of the day,” Mayor Jim Kenney said.

Jean Washington, Fletcher’s niece, called her aunt a “wonderful mother…aunt, sister, daughter.”

“I want justice for her children. They deserve their mom. For peace, we need justice,” Washington said.

“Inexcusable, deeply disheartening, horrible” level of gun violence, district attorney says

Philadelphia has been experiencing an increase in gun violence, DA Krasner said. Last week, the city recorded 11 homicides from September 3-9, he said.

Additionally, there have been 384 recorded homicides this year in the city as of Sunday, marking an increase of 4% for the same time period last year, Krasner said.

“It’s extremely important that we understand that we’re dealing with an inexcusable, deeply disheartening, horrible level of gun violence within the city of Philadelphia that is increasingly affecting children,” Krasner said.

The city’s mayor also commented on the surge in violence, calling the recent number of incidents “outrageous” and “simply unacceptable.”

“It’s just unfathomable to think of how many lives were impacted by gun violence and my deepest sympathies go out to the loved ones of everyone affected,” Kenney said.

Kenney said the ongoing violence near recreation centers and schools was one of the reasons the city now offers a $10,000 reward for any information leading to the arrest and conviction of someone who fires a weapon within 500 feet of a school, recreation center or library.

“Our playgrounds, our parks, our rec centers should be safe and sacred places in our communities,” Ott Lovell said.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Today’s Top Stories


donald trump...
Kate Sullivan, Gabby Orr and Kristen Holmes, CNN

Trump says he’s ‘more angry’ and ‘more committed’ to White House bid as he breaks his campaign trail hiatus

Former President Donald Trump said he's "more committed" to winning back the White House as he hit the campaign trail after announcing a third presidential bid.
17 hours ago
Atlanta Police Officers watch as protesters march during a rally against the fatal police assault o...
Nouran Salahieh, CNN

Protesters across the US decry police brutality after Tyre Nichols’ death

Protesters took to the streets to decry police brutality after the release of video depicting the violent beating that led to the death of Tyre Nichols.
17 hours ago
A hiring sign is displayed in the window of a Panera Bread store in Pittsburgh on Monday, Jan. 23, ...
Paul R. La Monica, CNN

Jobs report to give further clues about where economy is headed

Economists predict that 185,000 jobs were added last month, a slowdown from the gain of 223,000 jobs in December and 263,000 in November.
17 hours ago
Tyre Nichols Protests...
Nouran Salahieh, Jamiel Lynch, Chuck Johnston, Shawn Nottingham, Andy Rose and Phil Gast, CNN

More protests today after release of video depicting the deadly police beating of Tyre Nichols

Protesters across the US heldmarches & rallies on Saturday, one day after the release of video showing the police beating of Tyre Nichols in Memphis.
2 days ago
Temperatures dropping weather worsens...
Allison Chinchar, CNN Meteorologist

‘Dangerous’ arctic air returns this weekend after a month-long hiatus

What has been a mild start to 2023 will come to a halt this weekend as winter makes a roaring comeback across the Northern Plains and Upper Midwest.
2 days ago
Video footage of a traffic stop that led to the deadly beating of Tyre Nichols shows "acts that def...
Travis Caldwell, Jay Croft, Eric Bradner and Alisha Ebrahimji, CNN

Memphis releases video showing police stop that led to Tyre Nichols’ death

Editor’s note: This article contains graphic descriptions of violence. (CNN) — The city of Memphis has released police body camera and surveillance video showing the January 7 traffic stop and violent police confrontation that led to the death of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols. During the initial encounter between Nichols and Memphis police, an officer can be seen […]
3 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Banner with Cervical Cancer Awareness Realistic Ribbon...
Intermountain Health

Five Common Causes of Cervical Cancer – and What You Can Do to Lower Your Risk

January is National Cervical Cancer Awareness month and cancer experts at Intermountain Health are working to educate women about cervical cancer, the tests that can warn women about potential cancer, and the importance of vaccination.
Kid holding a cisco fish at winterfest...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Get Ready for Fun at the 2023 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest

The Bear Lake Monster Winterfest is an annual weekend event jam-packed full of fun activities the whole family can enjoy. This year the event will be held from January 27-29 at the Utah Bear Lake State Park Marina and Sunrise Resort and Event Center in Garden City, Utah. 
happy friends with sparklers at christmas dinner...

15 Easy Christmas Dinner Ideas

We’ve scoured the web for you and narrowed down a few of our favorite Christmas dinner ideas to make your planning easy. Choose from the dishes we’ve highlighted to plan your meal or start brainstorming your own meal plan a couple of weeks before to make sure you have time to shop and prepare.
Spicy Homemade Loaded Taters Tots...

5 Game Day Snacks for the Whole Family (with recipes!)

Try these game day snacks to make watching football at home with your family feel like a special occasion. 
Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...

The Best Tools for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Workplace Success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Team supporters celebrating at a tailgate party...

8 Delicious Tailgate Foods That Require Zero Prep Work

In a hurry? These 8 tailgate foods take zero prep work, so you can fuel up and get back to what matters most: getting hyped for your favorite
14-year-old charged with murder in killing of Philadelphia employee at playground