CARBONDALE, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A man has been sentenced for a Carbondale shooting that left another man dead after a drug deal went wrong.
Taaj Blan was found guilty of criminal homicide and aggravated assault back in August. On Wednesday he was sentenced today to 18-40 years for 3rd degree murder.
According to Pennsylvania State Police, in August 2022 police were called for gunshots heard from the parking lot of Fallbrook Apartments in Carbondale.
Once arriving on the scene police say they found Pernell Simmons, 35, on the ground with no signs of life and bleeding from his torso. Investigators found a 9mm Luger casing on the ground near Simmons’ body.
As stated in the affidavit, surveillance video was given to police by neighbors that showed Simmons walking out of an apartment building when a silver Scion TC coupe, driven by a man, later identified as Taaj Blan, 22, approached him.
The video showed Simmons walking to the driver’s side and getting shot, causing him to fall to the ground, allowing Blan to collect items that fell near Simmons and drive away, according to court papers.
Investigators say they got in contact with a witness to the incident who told them Simmons, himself, and two others were supposed to meet a man for a drug deal.
Blan was later arrested after his mother was found driving his car to the laundromat allegedly cleaning the clothes Blan had on the night of the shooting.