Arrest made in Holmesburg double murder

James Mears

Phil­adelphia po­lice have made ar­rests in con­nec­tion with two un­re­lated murder cases last month, in­clud­ing the double slay­ing of a Holmes­burg wo­man and her house guest.

James Mears, 25, of the 4700 block of Vista St., has been charged with the ex­e­cu­tion-style shoot­ing deaths of Dol­lie Evans, 67, and Ruby Thomas, 57, on Aug. 23 in­side Evans’ home on the same block, ac­cord­ing to po­lice, who ar­res­ted Mears three days after the killings. His al­leged motive was rob­bery.

Wit­nesses heard gun­shots at Evans’ home at about 5:32 p.m. and called 911. Po­lice found the front door ajar, Evans’ body on the liv­ing room couch and Thomas on the floor of a front up­stairs bed­room. Both had been shot once in the head. There were no signs of forced entry. Po­lice did not dis­close what per­son­al re­la­tion­ship Mears may have had with the vic­tims. Nor did po­lice dis­close what led them to sus­pect Mears as the killer.

Au­thor­it­ies re­portedly ar­res­ted an­oth­er man on Aug. 30 for the murder of May­fair res­id­ent Paul McK­ernan, 27. Po­lice con­firmed the ar­rest, but did not re­lease the iden­tity of the al­leged killer. McK­ernan was shot at about 11:30 p.m. on Aug. 15 dur­ing an ar­gu­ment out­side a Chinese res­taur­ant on the 1600 block of N. 55th St., ac­cord­ing to po­lice and pub­lished re­ports.

McK­ernan, of the 3200 block of Magee Ave., suffered a wound of the neck and died at the Hos­pit­al of the Uni­versity of Pennsylvania about a half-hour after the shoot­ing. ••

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