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The Post  
Guilty plea in Officer Walker Case; Coroner Says Birdie Africa Drowned
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 06/12/14 7:39 pm | updated: 06/12/14 7:39 pm
One defendant entered a guilty plea today in the murder case of an off-duty police officer killed during a robbery. In cooperation with the prosecution, 21-year-old Chancier McFarland pled guilty to third degree murder in the death of Officer Moses Walker Jr. back in August 2012. McFarland has agreed to work with the prosecution against his co-defendant, Rafael Jones, who is the alleged shooter. Officer Walker had just finished his shift and was walking along Cecil B. Moore Avenue in North Philadelphia to take public transportation home when he was robbed and shot by the two men. McFarland will escape a possible death sentence with his plea, but will be sentenced to 20-40 years in prison.

A Brevard County, Florida medical examiner has determined that Michael Moses Ward, formerly known as Birdie Africa, drowned because of alcohol intoxication. 41-year-old Ward's blood alcohol level was .156, nearly twice the legal limit. He was found in a hot tub aboard a Caribbean cruise ship last September. When he was 13 years old, Ward, then know as Birdie Africa, lived with his mother in the MOVE compound on Osage Ave in West Philadelphia. He was one of the survivors of the conflict between the militant group and Philadelphia police, when a bomb was dropped on the roof of the house by police. He changed his name in 1986 when he went to live with his father.

Flash Flood Watch, Scattered thunderstorms, temperatures in the lower 70's this evening in Center City.

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