Philadelphia, PA

Gunshots, Cheesesteak and the Liberty Bell: a Very Philly Homicide

Roz Warren
Photo by Dan Mall on Unsplashused with permission

Paul Burkert, 36, of Reading, PA has been charged with murder after fatally shooting David Padro, 23, of Camden, New Jersey, while waiting in line at Pat’s King of Steaks, Philadelphia’s iconic cheesesteak shop.

And if that weren’t enough to make this a uniquely Philadelphia homicide, it was an argument about football that led to the shooting. Philly sports fans pride themselves on their crazy rude behavior. (They famously booed and threw snowballs at Santa Claus in 1968.) The two men had been arguing about the Philadelphia Eagles and the New York Giants.

Soon after the shooting, Burket turned himself over to the police and taken into custody near the Liberty Bell. 

A shooting outside of Pat’s inspired by an argument about the Eagles in which the shooter is taken into custody near the Liberty Bell? 

That’s as Philly as a crime gets. 

Reader response to a report about the killing on Philadelphia Patch ranged from appalled to irreverent: 

Good job Philly. This will go a long way to negating the accusations that our city’s sports fans are animals *sigh*

A life lost over friggen football??? It’s crazy!! It’s so tragic!!

Who was the Eagles fan and who was the Giants fan? Very very poor reporting!

It doesn’t matter who was a fan of which team. A 23 year old is dead, that’s all that matters.

Neither of these guys are from Philly. No one from Philly would eat at Pat’s Steaks. Most crime committed around Eagles games does not involve people from Philly.

Pat’s Steaks was the absolute give away that they weren’t Philly residents lol.

Regardless of what you think of Pat’s, that would’ve been the best meal this guy will get for 20+ years. Should’ve brought his appetite and left the toy at home.

Gunshots, cheesesteak and the Liberty Bell. You can’t make this stuff up. 

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Roz Warren, the author of JUST ANOTHER DAY AT YOUR LOCAL PUBLIC LIBRARY, has appeared on both the Today Show and Morning Edition, writes for everyone from the Funny Times to the New York Times, and has been included in 13 Chicken Soup for the Soul collections. Drop her a line at

Bala Cynwyd, PA

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