Posted on February 17, 2021

Krasner Strikes Again: Man In U Haul with Human Torso Was Registered Sex Offender, Accused Burglar Let Out of Jail on No Bail

Ralph Cipriano, Big Trial, February 12, 2021

The man riding around town yesterday in a U-Haul with a dismembered human torso in back is a registered sex offender with a long rap sheet featuring more than a dozen arrests.

Taray Herring, 47, of Northeast Philadelphia, who confessed to police that he hacked up the victim’s body but claimed he didn’t kill anybody, was most recently let out of jail last June on a burglary rap, after a judge decided Herring didn’t have to post any bail.

Taray Herring

Taray Herring

On May 9, 2020, Herring’s bail for the burglary case had been set at $10,000 monetary, meaning he would have to post $1,000 to get out of jail. But on June 9, 2020, after the public defender filed a motion on Herring’s behalf to modify his bail, Judge James DeLeon decided that instead of $10,000 monetary bail, he would set Herring’s bail at $10,000 unsecured.

That meant that Herring didn’t have to post a cent to get out of jail. And where was the D.A’s office on that request? Standing up to protect the public? Nope. “By agreement of the Commonwealth,” court records say, with a pandemic on, the D.A.’s office went along with the public defender’s motion to spring Herring, so he wouldn’t come down with COVID.

District Attorney Larry Krasner and Jane Roh, his spokesperson, did not respond to a request for comment.

Krasner and Roh also declined to explain why, a year before the burglary arrest, in 2019, the D.A.’s office gave Herring lenient treatment. They let him plead guilty to a misdemeanor and granted him probation in a plea bargain for stealing a car, when the D.A. could have put prosecuted Herring on felony charges, and kept him in jail.

In both 2019 and 2020, Herring was accused of violating his parole, with both the stolen car arrest and the burglary arrest. But both times the D.A.’s office gave Herring a pass and let him back out on the street.

Last June, the D.A.’s office did one more favor for Herring: they asked a judge to waive a detainer filed by the county Probation Department against Herring that would have kept him in jail without bail until a hearing on the probation violation would have been held.

That’s why criminals call our D.A. “Uncle Larry,” because he’s their best friend.

At 9 .m. yesterday, police got a call about a burglary in progress involving a U-Haul truck parked outside a house at 1011 Sanibel Street in the Somerton section of the city. When the cops arrived at the scene, they observed a U-Haul truck with Arizona license plates traveling south of Kelvin Avenue.

“The vehicle pulled over, and as soon as the officers got out of the car the driver of the U-Haul just came right out the door and said, ‘I don’t want anything to do with this,’ and ‘There’s a body in the back,'” Sgt. Eric Gripp told 6ABC.

Officers searched the back of the van and found a trash bag with a dismembered human torso inside.

Herring, along with the driver, David Kirby, 43, didn’t attempt to escape and both were taken into custody, Sgt. Gripp told 6ABC. A police source said that neither man has been charged, but that Herring confessed to having dismembered the victim’s body.

Last night, police found a human leg and a hand in a dumpster behind a nearby Wawa at Kelvin Street and Bustleton Avenue, 6ABC reported. Police said the body parts could have belonged to the same victim.

Sgt. Gripp told 6ABC that police had been summoned by a neighbor to check up on Peter Gerold, 70, a licensed massage therapist who operated out of his house on Sanibel Street. Neighbors told cops that Gerold was missing, and so were his cars.

Herring, after he was Mirandized, gave a voluntary statement where he claimed that he didn’t kill the victim, but he did dismember him. According to police, Herring told the cops that after he hacked up the victim with an electric saw and a hacksaw, he deep fried various body parts, wrapped them in plastic, and disposed of them in various dumpsters in the 10800 block of Proctor Road.


Herring, according to the cops, is a registered sex offender who lived in an apartment at 600 Red Lion Road. {snip}