Home News Philadelphia-area man fatally shoots neighbor after being call N-word: police

Philadelphia-area man fatally shoots neighbor after being call N-word: police

A Philadelphia business owner fatally shot an upstairs neighbor amid a long-running conflict and immediately after being called the N-word, police said Sunday.

Maurice Byrd, 41, was charged with first-degree murder in the shooting of Stephen Strassburg, 37, in Hatboro, Pa., on Saturday, cops said.

According to charging documents, Byrd was on the phone with 911 operators when Strassburg, who is white, was heard in the background asking, “What are you going to do, you going to shoot me [N-word],” the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

Authorities said Byrd, who is Black, responded with five gunshots, according to the Bucks County Courier Times. Emergency dispatchers then heard two more shots, police said.

“I just had to shoot him,” Byrd allegedly told 911 dispatchers.

Byrd owns Razor Reese’s Salon and Spa in Hatboro, about 15 minutes north of downtown Philadelphia, according to police. Strassburg lived above the business, and police had been called to mediate disputes between them three times in the past 18 months. Cops ordered them to stay away from each other.

A witness told police that Strassburg called Byrd “a drug dealer” on Saturday and used the N-word, the Inquirer reported. Another witness said the two men almost started throwing punches.

Byrd told police he dialed 911 to report Strassburg for “verbal assault.” Strassburg entered Byrd’s business and again used the N-word, according to investigators. Strassburg then exited the business, and Byrd followed him out before the deadly final confrontation, Byrd told investigators.

Police said they recovered seven 9-mm. bullet casings from the scene, along with a 9-mm. Smith & Wesson semi-automatic handgun registered to Byrd. Strassburg was unarmed at the time, cops said.

Byrd was charged with first-degree and third-degree murder, authorities announced Sunday. He was jailed in Montgomery County without bail.

Strassburg is not related to former MLB All-Star pitcher Stephen Strasburg.


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