Archive for the tag 'violent crimes'

Borgella, left, and Evans, right.

Borgella, left, and Evans, right.

Convicted murderer Woody Borgella has been sentenced to 15-years-to-life in prison for the 2011 shooting death of his live-in girlfriend in their Midwood apartment.

A jury convicted Borgella, 31, earlier in March for shooting Lora Ann Evans in the chest, killing her. Borgella and Evans, a former porn actress turned self-help writer, had a short and tumultuous relationship that came to a head on September 19, 2011, when Borgella ended a financial dispute with gunfire.

“This defendant killed a woman in cold blood and casually walked away without looking back. Now that he will be spending the next 15- years or more behind bars, walking away from what he did will not be an option,” said District Attorney Kenneth Thompson, in a statement.

Borgella was convicted for murder in the second degree and criminal possession of a weapon.

According to the district attorney, Borgella and Evans were in a heated argument. Evans was on the bed, armed with a knife, struggling to keep Borgella at bay. A roommate heard the commotion and entered the room to break up the fight when Borgella drew a gun and shot Evans once in the chest, killing her.

Borgella fled on foot and ditched the gun behind a neighboring building. He remained on the run for two days before turning himself in to the 70th Precinct.

The convicted killer told the jury that he never intended to kill Evans, and that he was defending himself from his knife-wielding beau.

“I was just scared for my life,” he said while on the stand, according to a report by Brooklyn News Service.

The outlet reported that Borgella met Evans in June 2011, when Evans was unemployed and homeless. He invited her to move into the 1506 Ocean Avenue apartment he shared with two childhood friends.

Before moving to Brooklyn, Evans worked in the adult film industry under the names Lori Alexia and Penna Piererra. She quit the industry in 2009 to pursue a music career, and also launched a self-help website.

After the shooting, cops told reporters that Borgella had been named as the attacker on three separate domestic violence reports, although none related to Evans. He also had five prior arrests for drug possession, robbery, assault and theft.

Photo of the suspect, via Brooklyn News

Photo of the suspect, via Brooklyn News

A 30-year-old woman was beaten and robbed in broad daylight in Brighton Beach on Saturday, and cops are seeking the public’s help in tracking down the perpetrator.

The woman was knocked down from behind, punched in the face, and robbed of her cellphone on Saturday at approximately 2:15 p.m. The assault occurred near Brighton 8th Street and Ocean View Avenue.

The suspect is described as a 15- to 20-year-old black male, last seen wearing a red vest and gray hoodie. He is of medium build with close-cropped hair.

Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website, or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577.

[via New York Post and Brooklyn News Corp]

Source: Wikimedia Commons

We’re hearing from tipsters at Kings Plaza (5100 Kings Plaza) that there’s heavy police presence at the mall in response to another flash mob, with some on social media saying that stores may again be shut down.

One Twitter user counted as many as 14 NYPD vehicles near the entrances:

A Facebook user writes that police helicopters are also hovering in the area, and people are scrambling:

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At least one person using Google+ claims the mob was organized on social media:

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One tipster is calling it a riot, and said the stores are closing up as was done during an incident a few weeks ago. She left to avoid being locked into a store.

Apparently it’s causing problems for commuters trying to get past the mall:

sabrina

The whole incident echoes the situation on December 26. The mall’s chief of security told Sheepshead Bites at the time that approximately 500 teenagers became rowdy, forcing security to call for backup from the NYPD and to shutter the mall for two hours until order was restored.

Then, as now, students had off from school.

No arrests were made in the December incident, and police from the 63rd Precinct sent an e-mail to community leaders calling the perpetrators “rambunctious teens acting like children,” but noted that there were “no reports of injuries, larcenies or property damage.”

That incident was also reported to have been “promoted” in advance on social media.

The mall was also the scene of a brazen mid-day smash-and-grab jewelry heist last week.

UPDATE (6:49 p.m.): Cops took heat from local elected officials after the previous incidents for not making any arrests. If our tipster is right, officers took the hint and are preparing to detain some of the offenders:

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(“Tons and tons” is in response to our question about how many teens appeared to be involved.)

This is a breaking news story and may contain inaccuracies. We will update it as more information becomes available. If anyone has more information or additional photos, please send them to tips (at) sheepsheadbites (dot) com.

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Avenue I and East 16th Street, the scene of the shooting. (Source: Google Maps)

A 23-year-old Canarsie man was killed and another man seriously injured in what appears to be a drive-by shooting in Midwood early Saturday morning.

At approximately 4:00 a.m. the two victims were in a 2011 Toyota Camry at Avenue I and East 16th Street when a gunman opened fire.

The Daily News reports:

“I was riding my bike when I heard, ‘Bang! Bang! Bang!’ ” said a 45-year-old area resident. “It was so loud I thought they were shooting at me at first.”

[Gerard] Grant, who was driving, was shot four times in the chest and died, slumped over the steering wheel, police said. His friend suffered two wounds to the left side of the head and shoulder and was rushed to Kings County Hospital.

Grant’s family said they didn’t know about the shooting until police called.

“For us it’s impossible to say what could have gotten (Grant) involved in this because he’s a pretty good kid,” said his uncle Wallace Grant, 65. “He’s not a gang member of any type.”

The Yeshiva World News has a little more speculation from cops at the scene:

Sources tell YWN that the murder is an isolated incident, and the victims as well as the perpetrators are not from the area. It appears the victims were followed for quite some time before they were shot. It’s possible that the perpetrators shot the victims on that particular street, after the victims’ vehicle entered the block – which is a dead-end, with no way for them to exit.

Avenue L and East 5th Street, where the woman was attacked. (Source: Google Maps)

Avenue L and East 5th Street, where the woman was attacked. (Source: Google Maps)

Back in November we reported that a 78-year-old Midwood woman was punched in the head on Avenue L and East 5th Street by a  teenager playing a “knockout” game. The police have arrested a suspect in connection with this and six other assaults in Brooklyn.

According to police reports in a CBS story, the 78-year-old Midwood woman was the first victim. Barry Baldwin is accused of attacking Jewish woman and the attack in Midwood occurred around the time of eight other attacks in Crown Heights. It is unclear which of these other attacks he is being charged with. Out of the seven assaults Baldwin is being charged for, six of them carry hate crime charges since the victims were Jewish women.

Here is more from our post back in November,

While the “game” has surfaced as a possible national trend, it’s taken an ugly racial aspect in Brooklyn. This victim’s case comes on the heels of eight similar attacks in Crown Heights. None of the victims were robbed as part of the attack.

The NYPD’s Hate Crimes Task Force is investigating, as all the victims are Orthodox Jewish.

On the same day the incident became public, Public Advocate-elect Letitia James, Councilman David Greenfield, and Councilman-elect Chaim Deutsch came forward offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those involved in the eight previous attacks.

gulf

A man is in the hospital after being shot in the stomach by an unknown assailant in Brighton Beach on Saturday.

The shooting occurred at a gas station at Coney Island Avenue and Neptune Avenue, at approximately 5:45 p.m.

According to News 12, the man is in his 20s and was taken to Lutheran Hospital in serious condition. Police had not made an arrest by yesterday afternoon, but were seen searching a white van near the crime scene.

Sheepshead Bites has sent a request to the NYPD for more information on the incident, and will update this post when we hear back.

NYPD handout

NYPD handout

Police are hunting a suspect believed to be behind a brazen, broad-daylight knockout attack in Midwood, in a which a mother was assaulted while she walked with her 7-year-old daughter.

The suspect, above, slugged the 33-year-old woman in the back of the head at 2:45 p.m. on Sunday, at East 12th Street and Elm Avenue, just south of Avenue M. He fled on foot.

The woman suffered minor injuries and was taken to Maimonides Hospital. The child was unharmed.

The suspect is described as a black male, approximately 5-foot-8-inches with short braids. He was wearing a black wool cap, green jacket and dark-colored jeans. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS (8477).

[Sources: NY Post, Hamodia]

UPDATE (5:24 p.m.): Coucilman-elect Chaim Deutsch has put out a press release regarding the incident, and included with it a list of safety tips worth sharing:

Because the perpetrator(s) responsible for these vicious attacks are still at large, Councilman-elect Deutsch strongly encourages the community to consider the following suggestions:

-Always be aware of your surroundings -Walk in well lit and populated areas
-Be cautious of a suspicious person or group.
-Never allow yourself to become distracted by your cell phone, head phones etc.
-Always know your location in case you need to call for help.

Source: ah zut/Flickr

The man believed to be behind the Friday morning attack of a Jewish man on the Midwood – Kensington border was not charged with a hate crime, despite calls from local elected officials who say that perpatrators of the so-called “knockout game” are specifically targeting Jewish victims.

The 2:00 a.m. attack on 18th Avenue and East 5th Street saw four men arrested, but Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes’ office only filed charges against Amrit Marajh, who allegedly took the swing. He has been charged with misdemeanor assault, menacing and harassment charges, and has posted $750 bail. Police initially arrested him for a hate crime, a charge the district attorney did not press.

The assault is believed to be the latest incident of the violent “knockout game,” in which thugs take down unsuspecting passersby with a sucker punch before running off. The victim in this case was a 24-year-old Orthodox Jewish man.

Although it appears to be a national phenomenon, local leaders say the Brooklyn version has taken on an ugly racial edge, with the victims being Orthodox Jews living in Crown Heights, Midwood and Kensington.

CBS News reports:

One of the suspects, identified as Amrit Marajh, 28, was charged with aggravated assault as a hate crime, among other counts.

The other three suspects were released without charges.

… “I came across a group of people who were walking towards me, and I was able to hear them speaking loudly about this knockout game,” he said.

Kelly also told CBS 2’s Dave Carlin, “Just prior to it, (the assailants) were talking about the knockout game.”

The victim told investigators he heard one of the attackers say, “I’ll do it to this guy,” right before he was surrounded and punched, sources told CBS 2.

Marajh, through his lawyer, claims that the incident had nothing to do with the knockout game.

The Daily News reports:

Amrit Marajh, 28, had just left a bar on McDonald Ave. on Friday with four friends and was talking about boxing when the knockout game came up, police sources said.

“You can’t do that,” one member of the group said as they came upon Shmuel Perl, 24, according to a source.

Marajh allegedly said, “Yes I can, I’ll do it to this guy right now!” before punching Perl in the face, leaving him bruised.

Perl was not knocked out. According to news reports, all four appeared  intoxicated when they were arrested.

Authorities across the country have begun to question if the game even exists, or if the media is simply connecting a number of random acts that can occur on any given day.

The New York Times reports:

Yet police officials in several cities where such attacks have been reported said that the “game” amounted to little more than an urban myth, and that the attacks in question might be nothing more than the sort of random assaults that have always occurred.

And in New York City, police officials are struggling to determine whether they should advise the public to take precautions against the Knockout Game — or whether in fact it existed.

“We’re trying to determine whether or not this is a real phenomenon,” Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said on Friday. “I mean, yes, something like this can happen. But we would like to have people come forward and give us any information they have.”

Still, a diverse set of local elected have come forward to denounce the attacks. As we’ve already reported, Public Advocate-elect Letitia James, Councilman-elect Chaim Deutsch and Councilman David Greenfield have condemned the attacks, as has Assemblyman Dov Hikind. Later today, Congressmembers Hakeem Jeffries and Yvette Clarke, District Attorney-elect Ken Thompson, and Borough President-elect Eric Adams will hold a press conference doing the same.

Reverend Al Sharpton is also urging his supporters to speak out against the attacks, and is organizing a media campaign.

“If someone was running around talking about knocking out blacks, we would not be silent,” Sharpton said, according to CBS. “We cannot be silent.”

Sharpton aims to kick off a celebrity-driven public service announcement campaign to denounce the attacks.

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Surveillance video captured the suspect after one of his robberies. (Source: Gothamist)

A man believed to be behind as many as eight armed subway robberies was arrested after his latest mugging, which occurred at Gravesend’s Avenue U station on the F line.

CBS News reports:

Eric Gay, 43, of Brooklyn, is charged with three counts of robbery. Investigators believe he may be responsible for as many as eight muggings since Sunday.

As CBS 2′s Alice Gainer reported, each time, the suspect allegedly walked up to his victims, said he had a gun with a silencer and then robbed them.  However, they also said none of the victims actually saw the weapon the attacker claimed to have.

The attacks took place in the East Village, West Village, Queens and Brooklyn, police said.  Items the suspect stole ranged from iPods to cellphones, cash and MetroCards.

It was the Gravesend robbery that lead to his arrest. Gay allegedly robbed a man of an Android phone at the Avenue U station. Police tracked the phone and canvassed the area nearby, with the victim riding along. The witness spotted him, and cops made the bust.

Gay was taken to Kings County Hospital Center before being booked at the Brooklyn Robbery Squad. It’s unclear why he was hospitalized, and a follow-up by Gothamist returned no leads.

Source: .v1ctor Casale./Flickr

Police apprehended four individuals last night believed to be the assailants in a second “knockout game” assault in Midwood, according to Councilman David Greenfield, who is calling on the district attorney to make an example out of the suspects.

During the second attack, which happened at approximately 2:00 a.m. last night near 18th Avenue and East 5th Street, a Jewish man was walking when he was approached by four men and punched in the head. No property was stolen during the attack, and police arrested the gang shortly afterwards.

According to Greenfield, it’s the fourth knockout attack this month in Midwood and Crown Heights, with victims ranging in age from a 12-year-old boy to a 78-year-old woman.

Greenfield is now calling on Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes to charge the suspects with participating in a gang assault and hate crime, both felonies.

“It is now time for the NYPD and District Attorney to throw the book at these thugs and make it clear that our city will not tolerate this type of behavior, especially when people are being targeted because of their race or religion,” said Greenfield in a press release.

The councilman is also reminding residents to remain vigilant, report any suspicious activity and avoid walking the streets alone at night.

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