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1 Of 4 Defendants Gets Life In Slaying Of Somali Cab Driver

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Pittsburgh Department of Public Safety
/
AP
From left: Hosea Moore, King Edwards, Christian Glenn and Daniel Russell. The four have been arrested in connection with the fatal beating of 31-year-old Somali taxi driver Ramadhan Mohamed, who died Feb. 24 in a Pittsburgh hospital.

One of four defendants has been sentenced to life in prison in the death of a Somali immigrant cab driver three years ago in Pittsburgh.

Daniel Russell, 23, told an Allegheny County judge during Tuesday's sentencing that he needed a new court-appointed attorney so he could file an appeal, accusing his current attorney of being ineffective.

Russell was convicted of second-degree murder in November in the death of Ramadhan Mohamed in February 2017. Three other defendants are scheduled for trial in May.

Prosecutors allege that the group wanted to rob a pizza delivery driver but due to the late hour opted for a cab driver. Authorities said they punched, kicked and beat Mohamed, 31, who died three days later at a hospital. At the time, the victim had a 2-year-old son and his wife was pregnant.

The Islamic Center of Pittsburgh and others investigated the slaying as a hate crime, but police and prosecutors said there was no evidence that the suspects were motivated by Mohamed's nationality, race or religion.