‘South Philly slasher’ pleads guilty, gets up to 30 years in jail

south philly slasher cory harley
Cory Harley, 31, was sentenced to 15 to 30 years in jail for brutally slashing the face of Ashley Hackett last year in South Philadelphia.
Credit: Philadelphia Police Department

A Philadelphia judge on Tuesday sentenced 31-year-old Cory Harley, dubbed the “South Philly slasher” after he brutally cut a young woman’s face last year, to 15 to 30 years in prison.

Harley pleaded guilty to attempted murder and robbery just before his scheduled trial was about to begin.

Prosecutors said victim Ashley Hackett was on Nov. 11, 2012, walking on the 600 block of South Street when Harley, who was “lurking on the street,” began to follow her.

Wearing a hooded sweatshirt, Harley trailed Hackett for several blocks. He then snuck up behind the woman, reached around her body and, using a knife with a 4-inch blade and a brass knuckle-shaped handle, “slashed wildly.”

While standing above Hackett and still holding the knife, Harley grabbed the woman’s purse and ran as she screamed for help.

Hackett required more than 100 stitches to close a 6-inch-long cut to her jawline.

Investigators said Harley missed slicing Hackett’s throat by mere millimeters.

Authorities credited Hackett with giving police “a solid description” of her attacker and thanked neighbors for producing surveillance video of the assault.

Police eventually received an anonymous tip, leading them to arrest Harley in January 2013.

Prosecutors said at the time of his arrest, Harley still had in his home the victim’s purse, the knife and the blood-stained clothing he was wearing the night of the attack.


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