SCRANTON — Friends and family came out to a funeral home in South Scranton to pay their respects to a cab driver whose life was cut short by two gunshots to the back of his head.
A viewing and funeral service was held Wednesday night for Vincent Darbenzio.
“I’m very angry, to tell you the truth, because this is taking a human life, the way this was, this was senseless,” said John Ketchick of Archbald.
The body of Vincent Darbenzio was found hanging from the driver’s side of his McCarthy Flowered Cab on Crown Avenue in Scranton early Friday morning.
Later that day, police arrested Aazis Richardson, 16, and charged him with murder and robbery.
When asked about the pain he caused Darbenzio’s family, he dropped a four letter expletive: “[Expletive] them.”
Richardson told detectives he was riding in the back of Darbenzio’s cab, heading from Washburn Street to Valley View Terrace Apartments.
According to court documents, Richardson felt Darbenzio was trying to rip him off by running up the meter because Darbenzio was taking the long way even though Richardson was giving him short cuts, so he shot him.
“Just because the cab driver didn’t take this person the where he wanted to go in the time he wanted to get there, he takes a person’s life. It’s a shame. He should be ashamed of himself,” said Ketchick.
“My heart just goes out to the family. His two boys are in there. Now they don’t have their dad,” said Scranton Mayor Bill Courtright.
Among those who came out were Darbenzio’s co-workers.
“It’s been a hard week. I just got off today and I’m off the next few days. It’s been a hard week,” said Bill Leggat.
The Lackawanna County District Attorney said, as much as he would like to, state law prohibits him from seeking the death penalty because Richardson is a juvenile.
Many still can’t believe someone so young could do something so terrible.
“At such a young age, at 16, how you can become like that? I don’t know if anyone knows the answer to that,” said Courtright.
Darbenzio’s family declined to talk, saying they were too upset, however a family spokesperson say the family is asking that prosecutors seek the maximum punishment allowed in this case.