What Really Happened Inside 121 Greycourt Road?

A 10-year-old Northeast Philadelphia boy comes home from riding his bike to find both his parents brutally stabbed to death. The tragedy of Rob and Sophie DiAndrea would reveal not only a gruesome murder/suicide,but a chilling verdict on the dark side of modern marriage

The police called it "the slashing job."

The call came in at 5:18 p.m. on September 12, 2009. Ten-year-old Anthony DiAndrea had been playing with kids on his street in the Pennypack section of the Northeast when he decided to head inside to work on a book report for school. When he tried to open the front door of his house, it was locked. He walked around to the back door. Locked as well. And there was blood on it.

Anthony ran to a neighbor he knew had a spare key. The neighbor almost handed it to him, but then thought better of it. Instead, she walked back with him to the house. When she saw the blood on the door, she called 911.

Inside, police found blood everywhere — in the hallways, in the dining room, in the living room, in the basement. There was so much that the scene would later be described in the papers as “a Quentin Tarantino movie.” Upstairs, they found two bodies covered in blood: one in the computer room, the other in the master bedroom. And at least two bloody knives.

Detectives couldn’t immediately piece together what had happened inside 121 Greycourt Road. Had an intruder killed Anthony’s parents? Had his mom and dad engaged in a knife-fight to the death? Two days later, investigators ruled it a murder/suicide: Robert DiAndrea, 40, had stabbed his wife Sophie, 39, at least four times in the chest, then killed himself by slicing his arms—from his wrists all the way up to his biceps — 10 times.

It was a particularly gruesome crime in what would prove to be a particularly gruesome year for Philadelphia. There were 37 domestic homicides in Philadelphia last year … a 76 percent increase over 2008. Seventy-six percent. Experts blamed the economy, but that seemed too neat and tidy for a crime like this—one so intimate, and brutal.

The Daily News reported two days later that the DiAndreas had “domestic problems,” and that these would be “watered down” in the soon-to-be-released police report in order to be sensitive to the families. The implication was clear: There had been real trouble inside that house on Greycourt Road, serious trouble. Everyone knows there is a formula to something this heinous: a terrifying pattern of past behavior, a history. And so popular wisdom took hold, in Pennypack and beyond. There must have been 911 calls. Protection-against-abuse orders. Drugs. Alcohol. Yelling that the neighbors heard through open windows all summer long. Bruises that couldn’t be hidden with makeup. A man didn’t suddenly, out of nowhere, stab his wife to death and then kill himself on a Saturday afternoon.

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  • Joanne

    Facebook did not cause this murder… Rob did! So many people thought Rob was a great guy because he was personable and funny. Rob was NEVER a great guy!
    Great guys don’t… get a girl pregnant at age 17.
    Great guys don’t… continuously get suspended for fighting.
    Great guys don’t… cheat on their wife for 13 years.
    Great guys don’t… beat up their girlfriend.
    Great guys don’t… get arrested for aggravated assault.
    Great guys don’t… meet their girlfriend at Dunkin Donuts when their wife is in labor.
    Great guys don’t… leave their wife to care for a newborn and toddler all by herself.
    Great guys don’t… endanger the welfare of their children.
    Great guys don’t… need to get a second job to pay off gambling debts.
    Great guys don’t… murder their wife and leave their sons orphaned.
    Rob selfishly took Sophie’s life and destroyed his sons’ lives. I do not know how anyone can still think he was a great guy… he is a muderer!

  • Joanne

    Facebook did not cause this murder, Rob did! So many people thought Rob was a great guy because he was personable and funny. Rob was NEVER a great guy!
    Great guys don’t get a girl pregnant at age 17.
    Great guys don’t continuously get suspended for fighting.
    Great guys don’t cheat on their wife for 13 years.
    Great guys don’t beat up their girlfriend.
    Great guys don’t get arrested for aggravated assault.
    Great guys don’t meet their girlfriend at Dunkin Donuts when their wife is in labor.
    Great guys don’t leave their wife to care for a newborn and toddler all by herself.
    Great guys don’t endanger the welfare of their children.
    Great guys don’t need to get a second job to pay off gambling debts.
    Great guys don’t murder their wife and leave their sons orphaned.
    Rob selfishly took Sophie’s life and destroyed his sons’ lives. I do not know how anyone can still think he was a great guy, he is a murderer!

  • Miguel

    I am disappointed in the tone of your article. Your magazine excels itself as a provider of lifestyle news, not investigative journalism – and it shows here. You made a disservice to victims and their relatives everywhere. Your writer and her editor went for the gossip and easy pickings, and ignored many hard facts about the case. For shame.
    If you want to present the whole picture of this murdering bastard, instead of making it sound like he was a doting father paying for trips and baseball tickets, why did you not write about his gambling addiction (leading him to have a second job to help pay his debts), or his self-professed sex addiction (his “excuse” for cheating on Sophie for years).
    No one in his family or circle of friends wants to see him for what he was: a murderer. They all think he was this great guy to have around. it does not matter if he was fun to have around. He was a violent individual that committed a heinous crime and took the cowards way out. Everything he did in life does not outweigh his last crime.

  • m

    Why do you feel it necessary to take all of these personal life things and splash them across the page? Obviously, the family was private and incurred a horrible tragedy! Leave the family ALONE! Why get so personal ? Let the boys move on the best they can!

  • Regina

    Unless you are Rob or Sophie than you will not know the truth about their life, who did what to the other and what happened the day they died. So I think that these comments slandering either one of them is inappropriate and disgraceful. You should not speak about soemthing you know nothing about; unless you are Rob or Sophie commenting from the grave.

  • Maryann

    Joann,
    You need help ! Sophie was a user and cheated on Rob as you know ! And if you cared about the boys , you would keep your comments to yourself. The complete idiots who provided gossip just added more pain to the boys life – which they do not need .Rob and Sophie were not perfect and they deserve to rest in peace not gossip .

  • Jean

    after reading this article I looked up Rob’s criminal court docket (all public record), and it made me sick. She was such an amazing woman. and he was a coward AND a criminal! God bless Sophie’s boys! They truly have an angel watching and protecting him.

  • Kathy

    How terribly sad to leave their two boys, family, and friends with this tradgedy and grief.

  • Karen

    This article claimed to be about domestic violence, which had a whole two sentences. Then it was about the average man next door, those of us that knew Rob knew he wasnt, most average men don’t ever see the back seat of a police car, or stand in front of a judge for sentencing. Rob did have a dark side that he hid well, As for Sophie she had her flaws too, she was too trusting,,trusted that her husband would love and protect her!! She was too forgiving…she took him back after ten+ years of him cheating..She might have had her flaws but she was always faithful!!! A “user” anonymous says, using who Rob? haha, thats a joke…

  • Karen

    As for the comment, “Joanne (correct spelling) needs help” Your right her, myself, the boys, my chiildren and many others do need help, thanks to Rob..I can no longer sleep through the night without having nighthmares, I can no longer concentrate during my day at work, can’t go a day without having a breakdown, so yes we need help because precious Robbie has taken our trust, our faith and mostly our best friend, Aunt, Mother …Sophie. So maybe if someone would’ve gotten Rob the help HE needed for years than we wouldn’t be living this hell that we are living right now….

  • The Dog

    Even though it was 9 pages long, I couldn;t help but finish the read. Well done research and well written article.

  • Jeaneane

    Even though I too was hoodwinked by Rob while he was alive, I am not a fool to believe that he was a good man. I had only known Sophie and Rob when they were getting back together. I never knew the Rob I heard stories about, the one who stalked her and showed up at work. This is a Rob I never would have imagined if this information had not come from trusted sources. Sophie may not have been perfect, but who is? One thing I can tell you is that she loved her sons more then life itself. She was an AMAZING mother and friend. She touched the lives of the HUNDREDS of students she taught in her 14 years as a teacher, and nothing meant more to her then family.

  • Linda

    For all of you who are saying how much you love and miss Sophie, let her rest in peace. You are carrying on with this tragedy and only filling it with drama. As for Joanne’s comment about Rob not being a good man, your “best friend” happened to love him. Sophie was such a great woman? Great women don’t cheat on their husband with his best friend, before their wedding. A great woman doesn’t say she is going to make her husband “really jealous” because he thought she was cheating. I will agree that Sophie was a good mother, teacher, and friend…but was she a good wife? And as for “her friends”, if Sophie was in such a terrible situation, shouldn’t you have done something to help her? My guess, after reading Karen’s and Joanne’s comments (her best friends), they didn’t have enough common sense to help her.

  • Regina

    Karen sees nothing wrong with cheating; ask her 1st husband. So why Karen are you so quick to point out Rob’s wrongdoing, having a mental breakdown and so distraught? Because of guilt. You knew Sophie was cheating (for the umpteenth time), you encouraged her to cheat and you yourself were cheating on your 2nd husband; yet again. As for you Joanne, people who live in glass houses should not throw stones. Look in your glass house, Joanne, and really think hard about what you see; hopefully the next stone you throw will be at your own house. As for Karen, Joanne and anyone else that feels the need to blast Rob, saying how horrible he was, how scary he was, what a schmoozer and user he was think about this: were you all not the same people that vacationed with him, entrusted him with your children, were at his side for sporting & neighborhood events, went to his house & most of all you called him friend.So please tell me why you stuck around and stayed as part of his life for long yet did nothing to save Sophie

  • Regina

    and the boys from Rob who was so horrible? Rob & Sophie were together for 22 years; do you really think they would have been together for that long if Rob was so horrid? Neither Sophie nor Rob were saints but they loved each other, loved all three boys, loved the people in their lives and life itself. They both made mistakes in their lives and with each other; as we all make mistakes. It took both Sophie & Rob to cement the stones on the path to waht transpired Sept 12, 2009. You think Sophie was so innocent throughout life and sept 12th? Check your facts again. Both Rob & Sophie snapped like a rubber band stretched to hits elasticity & they both broke; mentally, physically, emotionally & spiritually. In that moment neither of them were in their right mind. Let them both rest in peace & let the boys keep the real memories, not the false memories that some of you are now putting in their heads. And for those of you that insist on laying blame on Rob always, always remember that when you accusingly point your finger at someone there are three fingers pointing back…

  • ken

    FIrst I think if people are going to write things on hear bashing one another, they should at least not be a coward and put their name down, not anonymous, this whole thing is out of control, Sophie’s friends are making excuses for Robs actions and Robs friends are accusing Sophie and her friends of doing things to cause this….its done and over now, theres no point rehashing all of it….I don’t believe there was any…and I mean ANY excuse for Robs actions, end of story…All of the friends and families are grieving maybe if people put some of there energy towards helping the boys whose lives are totally changed forever….

  • kenny

    mr or what ever you are anonymous you could be the biggest jackass. first of all you accuse my wife (karen) of cheating on me you should have some proof and the guts to put your name out there karen a

  • Joseph

    First of all this article was written in poor taste. This is not a soap opera this is the lives of real people and most importantly the 2 boys who have to live there lives without their parents. No one who has commented on this article can ever know the true pain those kids are going through. We cannot change the tragedy that has happened, but what we can do is stop giving credit to this classless magazine by posting comments on the site. This article did nothing to help the situation nor did it provide anyone with any answers to why this happened. The only thing this article did was make 2 beautiful children have to relive the loss of their PARENTS, the 2 people in your life that you are supposed to count on and have there for you during rough times and throughout your most important parts of your life. They will never get the chance to see them or hear their voices again. That is something none of you have ever gone through at least not at the stage of life they are in. We all lost 2 special people and the only thing we can…

  • Joseph

    Isn’t this exactly what the tacky writer wanted? Its enough now.

  • Joseph

    If anyone really cares about the true victims in this then they will do what they can to help the 2 boys. There is an education fund that is in place to provide them with the means to achieve their goals in life. If anyone is really interested in making a difference in someone’s life and putting their energy into something useful then this is a chance to do so. You can go to the Wachovia Bank 2560 Huntingdon Pike, Huntingdon Valley, Pa 19006 or call 215-947-3700 and donate to the DiAndrea Boys education fund.

  • Wil

    I am just some random person from Jersey that didn’t even catch this event on the news but stumbled on the article. I am here to say STOP SLAMMING EACH OTHER via comments. it will help no one feel better and will prolong the pain and suffering for all of those involved. be the bigger person and stop.

  • Joe

    “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at them.”

  • Laura

    How sad that you chose to relive the most horrible event to happen to 2 innocent young boys who have already been scared for life and are carrying on with the ultimate courage. This was a hugely private matter for family and friends and not one to splash all over your magazine just as any tabloid would about a celebrity. This magazine has just dropped several notches in my opinion.

  • rob

    This is Rob’s oldest son Robert and I am not only disgusted but amazed at the lack of maturity some of you “adults” are showing. You come on here read some half-a$$ article and all of a sudden you guys know MY family? hate to break it to you but more than half of this is false. Karen & Joanne you guys get on here and trash my dad like a bunch of 10 yr olds. HE AND SOPHIE ARE NOT HERE TO DEFEND THEMSELVES. you are carrying on like a bunch of little kids. GROW UP. You think Sophie would want you carrying on and saying what you people are saying? You think either of them would want to know that maybe their kids could read some garbage like this about their personal lives? Any personal problems between the two of them were exactly that, BETWEEN THE TWO OF THEM.I LOST MY GOD DAMN FAMILY and now I gotta watch you people play judge and jury? like any of you are any better. you call yourself adults? Adults don’t act like this. Karen and Joanne you are teachers right ? Do you tell your students if they…

  • Rob

    Do you tell your students if they have nothing nice to say then don’t say anything? Maybe you should practice that and The anonymous person who wants to act like they know all about Soph and My Dad, knock your $hit off. Because none of you know jack $hit. And Jeaneane its easy to get one side of the story. if you thought something bad of my dad you sure as hell did’t show it. So please keep what you think to yourself. All of you claim you want MY BROTHERS to come out as good as they can right ? then don’t slam their deceased parents on the internet because THEY MAY SEE IT. They deserve to remember Mom and Dad the way THEY WANT to, not the way you want them to or the way you do.

  • John

    Robert you couldn’t have said it better. You and your family need to get on with your lives the best you can.

  • kenny

    karen and joanne were only doing this stupid article because they wanted to make sure sophie was protected. so everybody can say what they want both of them loved her so much and they only do what the

  • kenny

    karen and joanne were only doing this stupid article because they wanted to make sure sophie was protected. so everybody can say what they want both of them loved her so much and they only do what the

  • kenny

    karen and joanne were only doing this stupid article because they wanted to make sure sophie was protected. so everybody can say what they want both of them loved her so much and they only do what the

  • kenny

    karen and joanne were only doing this stupid article because they wanted to make sure sophie was protected. so everybody can say what they want about both of them they loved her so much and they only do what they think is right for her. everybody should be bashing this piece of trash magizine for starting this in the first place.

  • kenny

    karen and joanne were only doing this stupid article because they wanted to make sure sophie was protected. so everybody can say what they want about both of them they loved her so much and they only do what they think is right for her. everybody should be bashing this piece of trash magizine for starting this in the first place.

  • Karen

    First I was against doing the article in the first place, we were told by the editer that “all” of Rob’s family and his friends did it and if we didn’t we wouldnt be happy with the way the story would portray Sophie, so I asked her boys if they wanted me to do it, can any of you say the same? NO.They said yes so sadly we did it. Secondly..Rob “was” my friend, my dear friend until Sept 11, but now I have so much anger towards him. I never said he was scary ,a user or half of the things being said, I said he needed some sort of help,which he must have. Did I feel she was in danger, never to this extent.And for the people that want to question my grief,I won’t even justify that idiotic comment, ask her neighbors who is sitting in front of her house everyday, and planting flowers and cutting the lawn, who packed up her whole house, where any of you there?No it was too hard, I understand, Sophie was my family too. ANd yes I miss BOTH of them and my kids have pictures of Rob all over too…

  • Karen

    I knew going into this mess that there could be no good that could come out of it, but I just was too afraid to let Sophie’s name be drug threw the mud.I’d rather take the brunt of it that see her get hurt anymore than she has. I did what I thought she would want me to do for her, was it a mistake? I dont know, I think the whole article was a mistake and I”d love to know who initiated it, because there was no point to it..but I won’t let her be hurt again, she has been hurt enough.I would say RIP Sophie, but I know shes not, She can’t be at peace with all of this, with leaving her beautiful boys to grow up without her….

  • Gia

    Why