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Accused McDonald's killer awaits extradition

WEST CHESTER, Pa. -- A 21-year-old man accused of slaying two employees during the robbery of a McDonald's restaurant was expected to be extradited from Delaware to face homicide charges, police said Monday.

Robert B. Hughes IV of Glen Mills was arrested Sunday afternoon in Wilmington, Del., after an unidentified tow truck driver who gave the suspect a ride later heard his description on a police scanner and called police.

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Hughes was apprehended at a Wilmington bus station, where he scuffled with police and reportedly told officers he would have killed them if he knew they were going to arrest him, police said.

Hughes was charged with two counts of first-degree homicide, two counts of criminal homicide and related offenses for the execution-style slayings of restaurant manager Jean Reider, 41, of Newark, Del., and employee Charles Hegarty, 46, of East Goshen, Pa.

Chester County District Attorney James MacElree said both victims had been shot in the head from close range in the restaurant in West Chester.

'The gravity of this offense, the horror of this offense, speaks for itself,' MacElree said.

Authorities said they found a .38-caliber handgun, a bag containing an undetermined amount of cash and a McDonald's receipt on Hughes, who was being held without bail in Delaware pending extradition.

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The suspect identified himself as Terrance Russo, 21, of Upper Darby. The gun believed to be used in the crime was registered to Terrance Russo, but authorities said they believed the name was an alias.

West Goshen Township police officers responded to the armed robbery call at the McDonald's in a West Chester shopping center at 5:34 a.m. Sunday, MacElree said. Police officers found one of the restaurant doors unlocked and discovered the two employees dead on the floor. MacElree said it was not clear how the robber entered the restaurant. There was no sign of forced entry.

'It was also observed that the safe had been opened and the money trays had been emptied,' the district attorney said.

A third McDonald's employee had been about to enter the restaurant when Reider waved the unidentified worker away. The employee went to a nearby market and called police.

'That employee, however, did have the opportunity to observe the shooter,' MacElree said.

In November, the father of a 16-year-old McDonald's employee in Levittown, Pa., another Philadelphia suburb, was shot to death during a similar robbery attempt. Chester County authorities said they did not believe the two robberies were connected.

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