Ridley Township man convicted of killing his neighbor in fight over noise

A Delaware County Court jury found a Ridley Township man guilty of first-degree murder Friday in the 2011 killing of his neighbor.

James Dellavecchia, 73, was convicted of fatally shooting Scott Robins, 42, in an October noise dispute.

Prosecutors said Dellavecchia was upset about noise from his neighbor's construction project that disturbed his "slice of heaven."

Robins was on his way to work when he was shot six times. A seventh bullet lodged in his wallet.

His stepdaughter, Kristen Snow, was critically wounded when she came into the driveway to check on her father.

In his closing arguments, prosecutor Joseph McGettigan called Robins a hero and said he did two things just before he died: He saved a life and named his killer.

Robins shouted at coworker Rick Wallace, who was waiting so the two could drive to work, to run as Dellavecchia pumped bullets into him. As he lay dying on the pavement, Robins told police that Dellavecchia had shot him, McGettigan said.

Dellavecchia took the stand Thursday and testified that he had no memory of the shooting.

He said he remembered walking to the Robins home, carrying the gun he had purchased just weeks before. He said there was a struggle and the gun discharged.

"I thought I had been shot," Dellavecchia said when asked why he went home, took a shower, and hid the weapon.

"I did not intentionally do anything," Dellavecchia testified. "I didn't take anybody's life."

Snow had testified that Dellavecchia stood over her after shooting her and pointed a gun at her head.

In his closing arguments, defense attorney Steven F. O'Meara said that while Snow believes that happened, other witnesses placed Dellavecchia elsewhere at that time.

He contended that the case was not about construction or loud music but about a difficult neighbor, his client. That conflict, O'Meara said, resulted in Robins' getting out of the van and punching Dellavecchia.

 


Contact staff writer Mari A. Schaefer at 610-892-9149, mschaefer@phillynews.com or @MariSchaefer on Twitter.