Richard Poplawski, Pennsylvania


February 27, 2017

Richard Andrew Poplawski was scheduled to be executed on Friday, March 3, 2017, at the Rockview State Correctional Institute in Rockview, Pennsylvania. His execution has been stayed. Thirty-year-old Richard is convicted of the murders of 37-year-old Paul J. Sciullo, 41-year-old Eric G. Kelly, and 29-year-old Stephen J. Mayhle, all police officers, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on April 4, 2009. Richard has spent the last five years of his life on death row in Pennsylvania.

Around 7 am on April 4, 2009, Officers Paul Sciullo and Stephen Mayhle responded to a domestic disturbance call at the home of Richard Poplawski’s mother. Richard was waiting for the officers, armed and wearing a bullet-proof vest. As they approached, Officer Sciullo was immediately shot in the head. Officer Mayhle was shot seconds later.

Officer Eric Kelly was driving home after completing and overnight shift when he heard the call for help. He was shot while attempting to help Officers Scuiullo and Mayhle. Officer Timothy McManaway arrived a short time later and was shot attempting to help Officer Kelly, whom he saw waving. McManaway was able to seek cover and return fire. A short time later, a SWAT team arrived, along with other law enforcement officers. According to a witness, the police were unable to secure the scene to help their injured officers.

Officers Kelly, Sciullo, and Mayhle died from their injuries.


A standoff between the police and Poplawski lasted approximately four hours. Poplawski was shot in the leg prior to surrendering. According to witnesses, hundreds of shots were fired before Poplawski surrendered.


Richard Poplawski’s execution has been stayed by the Allegheny Court of Common Pleas. Richard has not completed his federal appeals process.


Please pray for peace and healing for the families of Paul Sciullo, Stephen Mayhle, and Eric Kelly. Please pray for strength for the family of Richard. Please pray that Richard may come to find peace through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, if he has not already.



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