One Dead, One Critical After Home Construction Feud in Delco Leads to Shooting

A Ridley Township man was killed and his stepdaughter critically injured after an elderly neighbor opened fire on them this morning in the culmination of a months-long feud over backyard construction.

Police arrived to a home on the 900 block of Sylvania Avenue around 6 a.m. to find Scott Robins, 42, lying in his front yard with multiple gunshot wounds. His stepdaughter, 23-year-old Kristen Snow, was shot in the abdomen, said

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Lt. Scott Willoughby of the Ridley Township Police.

Robins told police that neighbor James DellaVecchia, 72, waited outside Robins’ home and shot him as he left for work. Snow ran outside when she heard the gunshots and was subsequently hit.

Robins’ coworker, Richard Wallace, was waiting in a van to pick Robins up when the shooting began and crawled under his truck to avoid the hail of bullets. He told police that, as he ran from the scene, DellaVecchia continued to shoot in his direction.

Robins was taken to Crozer Hospital, where he died shortly before 8:30 a.m. Snow is in extremely critical condition. She underwent surgery around 3 p.m. and is expected to undergo a second surgery tonight or tomorrow morning. Wallace was not struck.

DellaVecchia was arrested, but subsequently taken to Crozer and underwent surgery after police say he intentionally slammed his head against the cell door while in custody.

He is charged with first degree murder for Robins’ death, as well as two counts of attempted murder for shooting at Snow and Wallace. Police are waiting for DellaVecchia to recover from his injuries so that he is coherent enough to be arraigned.

DellaVecchia and Robins had been feuding through the summer about construction in Robins’ backyard, which butts up against DellaVecchia’s yard. Lt. Willoughby said that police had been called out five or six times over the past few months to respond to domestic disputes between the two men.

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