Carjacking suspect seeks forgiveness

PHILADELPHIA – Minutes after learning a mother had also died from a Philadelphia carjacking crash that killed three of her children, a teen suspect blurted out a lament during a brief court hearing Wednesday.

“I’m going to ask for forgiveness from the family,” Johnathan Rosa, 19, told the judge as he waived his right to a hearing in the quadruple murder case.

Rosa and co-defendant Cornelius Crawford, 23, are charged with carjacking a real estate agent as she left a showing in her luxury SUV. The agent was punched in the face and sexually assaulted, allegedly by both men, before the speeding vehicle blew a tire and crashed into a family selling fruit for their church.

Keisha Williams, 34, died of her injuries last week and will be buried Thursday. Her children – 15-year-old Keiearra Williams, 10-year-old Thomas Joseph Reed and 7-year-old Terrance Moore – died the day of the July 25 crash and were buried as their mother clung to life in a hospital.

“If the car zigs left instead of right, it’s a different case,” said defense lawyer C.P. Mirarchi III, who represents Crawford and offered remorse on his client’s behalf. He wants to know if Crawford was under the influence of drugs or alcohol that day.

“Hijacking the car to make a few dollars can sound like a good idea if you’re high,” Mirarchi said.

Crawford had been out on parole for a few months, working odd jobs, after being incarcerated at age 16 for robbery, relatives said. He earned a GED certificate in prison, but struggled as many do to find work as a convicted felon.