A Horrific Crime on Pittsburghs North Side 11 yr old Scott C. Drake molested murdered and mutilated They got his suposed Killer . But did they get everyone involved ?

While working in the North Side of Pittsburgh in late 90's involved with turning some old buildings into a Photography Museum You often would encounter the homeless who walked the streets  at all hours of the day and night. 2 older guys in particular you would see all the time begging for money often at the corner of Madison and East Ohio Street. They where a fixture for several months and you never saw one with out the other. We would later learn one of them was named Cornelius when we saw what had happened


It was kind of comical these 2 guys as they would wonder around the north side everybody liked them and would give them change  . They often hung out at intersection of Madison and East Ohio where the Arc house Alcohol Recovery Center operated  across from the scene  where the crime happened . But then there was a 3rd guy who showed up on the North side and he looked a lot like  the bigger of the homeless pair and dressed the same who wondered around the north side. Many times when we had a crew of guys on a project we would have extra pizza left over from lunch and offer it to them  But the 3rd guy who looked like Corneluis  was not very sociable and kept to him self.

But then one evening on the news there was a horrifying crime. A young boy 11yr old Scott C. Drake had been raped mutilated and murdered and by that morning they had a suspect Mr. Cornelius?

We where all shocked how could this be you never saw Mr Cornelius with out his partner and what about the guy who looked just like him. Needless to say we contacted the detectives Did they have the right guy?  because we all knew about the other guy who looked a lot like him  and besides no one ever saw Cornelius around any one other than his partner .

Scene of the crime  now all changed since reconstruction this empty lot was once all heavily wooded

Of course we where ignored  including us asking abut where the guys smaller partner was ?

As soon as the arrest went down the guy who looked like Cornelius was no where to be seen and neither was his partner had they fled out of fear?  Where they possibly involved in the crime ?  or where they victim's of foul play as well ? What about the ARC House all those possible suspects right there who could have been involved right across the street ?
We will never know because our concerns where dismissed. Concerns Mr Cornelius attorney  John Elash should have known about .

Even Mr. Cornelius attorney John Elash did not think Cornelius could have done it just did not seem to fit his profile
But he was convicted and confessed but was it cohearsed   was blood evidence ,finger prints etc presented during the trail ? DNA was just starting to be developed so I do not know if that was used during the trail the jury came to the scene but where never told about the partner or the 3rd look a like man .
 To my knowledge no appeal has ever been filed. As far as the courts are concerned justice was done but was it?  I do not think we have heard the last of this case at some point some group may go back and look at it and take a second look and a harder look at the guy who looked and dressed like Cornelius and his partner .

A small tree  was planted near the intersection in memory of Scott Drake  which was later torn out by mistake by Penn Dot when they rebuilt the interchange for I-279 and route 28 and Penn Dot has since installed a new tree and small marker in his memory.

Memorial to Drake  small tree and marker

1 comment:

  1. Wow! Thank you for all this information. I just saw a small story on Scott Drake in a newspaper from 9/27/2000 I kept to Some Day cut out an article on the closing of a local slum hotel in Carlisle PA. Then got curious if they caught the killer of that poor child and what the story was.
    Thank you!