This is a follow-up page to one that I wrote on November 6 in which I describe the murder of a cat-loving man whose name is Albert Chernoff. At the time it had been thought that he’d been killed by an escort. Police have now arrested a 14-year-old female who allegedly killed him with a nail-studded two-by-four piece of wood. The murder was brutal. It happened in the middle of the night.
The girl has been charged because her exploits inside Chernoff’s home were recorded on his security camera. She gave herself up it appears on the advice of her family and lawyer. She turned herself into police accompanied by her mother on November 8 after family members saw the security camera video as reported by CNN.
Apparently, she is clearly the person in the video. The girl is seen wearing red sweatpants, a black jacket and a pink top walking through the living room and into the kitchen. She washed her hands and looked inside the fridge and freezer before leaving the home.
Police were called to Chernoff’s home by a neighbour who asked for them to check because he “heard a racket”. He heard noises in the middle of the night as if Chernoff was building something. The neighbour went outside and saw Chernoff’s car which was parked in an unusual spot in the driveway. On looking inside he saw that it had been ransacked.
The girl’s name has been withheld because of her age. The authorities are unsure about her status as a defendant. They are not sure whether to treat her as an adult or a child.
Chernoff was a war veteran and apparently he was well liked in the neighbourhood perhaps partly because he was an animal lover (with 11 cats in his home). The cats were seen in the video as the girl wandered through his home. Chernoff was employed as a building maintenance supervisor at the Philadelphia International Airport. He appeared not to have had a criminal record.
Animal welfare advocates in Philadelphia are stunned by his death. As mentioned, he was well known amongst animal welfare advocates. Blake Martin of Philadelphia’s animal care and control team said, “If you help animals in Philadelphia, you’ve met Al”.
The victim was known for building shelters for feral and stray cats in the city. He founded a one-man rescue group, Alleycat Animal Rescue. He was a very generous person we are told. The Facebook page of “The Cat Rescuers,” a documentary about cat rescue in New York City, described Chernoff as “one of many amazing rescuers” filmmakers encountered during filming.
Chernoff said that he was always into cats and he liked Harley-Davidson bikes as well. He had cat tattoos on his arms (see video). A fundraising webpage has raised more than $18,000. It was set up by David Levin to help pay for Chernoff’s funeral fees and to provide for the cats he left behind and to help more rescue cats. David Levin is the son of Beverley who is Chernoff’s cousin.
There is talk that the girl might have been a victim herself. This is being investigated. Also, a Twitter post states that Chernoff got what he deserved if he was having sex with a 14-year-old.