“It’s a hell of a situation”: Latino teenager charged with gang homicide had just been released by a judge in New York

NYPD blames penal reform and fears more violence in the summer.

Photo: Andrés Correa Guatarasma / Courtesy

Alberto Ramírez, a 16-year-old teenager, was arrested on Monday for the murder “by mistake” of Eric Velásquez, a crime that orphaned two children, in the Bronx (NYC).

The case reignited criticism from the Bronx District Attorney’s Office against the acting judge of the Supreme Court Denis Boyle, who reduced bail in a previous indictment against Ramírez, a gang member who already had three arrests for firearms in four months, what got him out of jail in March and allegedly fatally shooting Velasquez last month.

Ramírez has now been charged with murder and criminal possession of a weapon and has pleaded “not guilty.” According to the police fired into a crowd on the ground of a rival gang, mistakenly hitting Velásquez (34). Yesterday a similar situation was experienced in Yonkers, with a gunman firing from a moving car, leaving four wounded.

A police source familiar with the Ramírez cases said Judge Boyle “gave this boy enough rope to hang himself.” Another expert commented wryly to the New York Post: “Here’s a kid who got a gun, got another gun, got another gun.”

Judge Boyle also sent two of Ramírez’s gun cases to Family Court, despite the fact that the prosecution wanted to process him as an adult for those charges.

“Boyle is no stranger to the failures that led to disastrous results,” noted the New York Post. Last year, the lawyer was criticized for his decision to release Jordon Benjamin, a 16-year-old also accused of involuntary manslaughter who allegedly cut a young woman in the abdomen.

Velasquez, was walking with a cousin past a dice game off 340 East 184th St. in Fordham Heights, around 12:30 a.m. on May 16, sources said. Ramírez, a renowned member of the gang “Young Gunnaz, YG”, allegedly opened fire indiscriminately, beating Velásquez, after venturing into territory controlled by the rival group “Slattery Avenue Boys”, sources said.

Gang members refer to the deadly practice as “spinning the block,” according to sources. “It’s a hell of a situation”, said an old friend of Velásquez, who did not want to be identified.

“I went to his wake and couldn’t speak. He is a great man. Not well. Two children, wife, hardworking man. Everyone loved him ”, commented on Velásquez.

“If you read that story, you think it is not true but, unfortunately, it is tragically true,” commented yesterday the New York Police Commissioner Dermot Shea, interviewed by radio station 1010 WINS.

He added that “Bad policies,” such as the 2020 bail reform, allowed the random murder of Velásquez, an innocent father victim of a gang member released by a judge. “It’s what New Yorkers and the men and women in this department face every day.”

Shea also commented, “My conclusion is clearly that this was not what was intended with some of the recent laws ”, He added that enacting stricter bail rules “should and should be the priority” for the state legislature.

The number of shootings in NYC increased 73% in May compared to the same month last year. Last week, Commissioner Shea again blamed the state bond reform in 2020 as part of the reason for the increase in crime. “This is crazy”, She complained.

Criminal reform has been charged with increasing crime in NYC since last year, in addition to the release of prisoners to avoid coronavirus infections in prisons. At the same time, arrests have also dropped. According to experts, this raises concerns of a more violent summer in NYC this 2021.

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