Rachel King murder: Suspect in teacher's shooting death also charged in separate murder case

ByAnnie McCormick WPVI logo
Friday, April 28, 2023
Man charged in murder of mother shot in Dunkin' drive-thru also charged in second homicide
Man charged in murder of mother shot in Dunkin' drive-thru also charged in second homicide

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Pa. -- Montgomery County, Pennsylvania authorities announced the arrest of two people in connection with the killing of a Cheltenham Township, Pennsylvania mother.

Rachel King, a 35-year-old mother and teacher at Grover Cleveland Elementary School in Philadelphia, was shot and killed in a Dunkin' drive-thru on April 11.

On Wednesday, it was released that Zakkee Steven Alhakim, 33, of Philadelphia, and Julie Jean, 34, of Elkins Park, were both charged with first-degree murder in her killing.

READ | 'Cold-blooded killing': 2 charged in murder of mother shot in Dunkin' drive-thru

However, officials said one of the suspects is also charged in a second deadly shooting.

The Montgomery District Attorney's Office announced Wednesday that Alhakim is also charged in the fatal shooting of 36-year-old James "Chris" Farrell Jr.

"I'm at ease because I know where he is, and I don't have to worry anymore," said Addie Farrell, Chris' mother. "Then, the fact this young man is in jail, and it kind of brought some closure."

James and Addie Farrell, Chris' parents, were looking at photos of their tight-knit family.

Chris was the youngest of seven children.

The 36-year-old former standout athlete at Simon Gratz High School was shot and killed on April 7.

READ | Man shot, killed on Broad Street in Logan section of Philadelphia: Police

"It's like a gap, a void because we know we can't see him, and we want to make sure his daughter still knows we're here," said Addie Farrell.

In King's murder, authorities say that Jean, a jilted ex-lover of King's boyfriend, conspired with Alhakim to kill the beloved teacher.

Hours later, Philadelphia police said the silver Mercury Sable used in King's killing was driven by Alhakim in North Philadelphia, and he was taken into custody.

Police said ballistics from both Chris Farrell's and King's scenes matched.

"Our hearts are hurting but we also believe this in time they will be healed and we can move forward with our grandson," said Carol King, Rachel King's mother.

Now, both the King and Farrell families are connected by tragedy.

"I extend my deepest sympathies to them," said James Farrell.

"We're ok now, everybody is sad, remembering the good things about him," added Addie Farrell.

The Farrells said they are grateful to the 35th district and homicide detectives who solved the case so quickly to give them closure.