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Wilkinsburg murderer Ronald Taylor, who focused on white individuals, passes away in prison

A Wilkinsburg man who was given the death penalty for a racially motivated attack in 2000 that resulted in the deaths of three people passed away this week while in prison.

A Wilkinsburg man who was given the death penalty for a racially motivated attack in 2000 that resulted in the deaths of three people passed away this week while in prison.

63-year-old Ronald Taylor was in custody on death row at the State Correctional Institution Phoenix in Montgomery County.

He passed away on Tuesday from natural causes, as reported by a spokeswoman for the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections.

Taylor was found guilty of three charges of premeditated murder and two charges of aggravated assault after shooting five individuals on March 1, 2000.

The victims were John Kroll, 55, who worked as a maintenance man at Taylor’s apartment building; Joseph Healy, 71, a retired priest; and Emil Sanielevici, 20, a third-year physics student at the University of Pittsburgh.

Authorities stated that Taylor, who was Black, selected his targets based on their race.

During the trial, his lawyers presented an insanity defense and argued that Taylor suffered from paranoid schizophrenia — he had been admitted to a hospital twice in 1990 and 1998 — and was not accountable for his actions.

The jury did not agree and sentenced Taylor, who had no previous criminal record, to death.

He had been on death row since then.

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