FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, September 2, 2015
Two Gang Members Sentenced to 21 Years to Life and 20 Years in Prison
For Killing and Slashing of Two Rivals
One Victim Stabbed 28 Times and Another Knifed in Throat During Attack in Coney Island
Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson today announced that two Coney Island men were sentenced to 21 years to life in prison and 20 years in prison, respectively, for a violent attack on a group of rival gang members in 2012 that left one man dead and another with slash wounds to his throat.
District Attorney Thompson said, “These two defendants engaged in senseless gang violence on the streets of Brooklyn and deserve every day that they will now spend behind bars.”
The District Attorney identified the defendants as Alex (“Shorty”) Escamilla, 23, and Heiberto (“Big Boy”) Guerrero, 24, both of 1608 Mermaid Avenue in Coney Island, Brooklyn. Escamilla was sentenced today by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun to 21 years to life in prison following his conviction on May 26, 2015 on charges of second-degree murder, attempted murder, first-degree assault, first-degree gang assault and criminal possession of a weapon after a jury trial. Guerrero was sentenced to 20 years in prison following his conviction on June 9, 2015, by a separate jury at the same trial, on charges of first-degree assault, first-degree gang assault and criminal possession of a weapon.
The District Attorney said that, according to trial testimony, on June 4, 2012 at approximately 1:55 a.m., the defendants were driving on Neptune Avenue in Coney Island, when they saw the victims on the corner of West 15th Street and Neptune Avenue. They made a U-turn, exited the vehicle, Escamilla armed with a knife and Guerrero holding a pipe, and chased the victims down West 15th Street.
Guerrero caught up with Jose Herrera, 28, and assaulted him, before Escamilla joined the attack. The victim died, suffering 28 stab wounds to the face and body as well as 13 blunt force impact injuries to his head and face, according to evidence presented at trial. Angel Reyes, 22, was slashed during the attack and suffered a laceration to the throat. Both victims were unarmed.
District Attorney Thompson said that the motive for the assault was ongoing violence between two rival gangs. The defendants belonged to the Coney Island Warriors and the victims to El Esquadron (also known as SDN). Surveillance footage captured part of the chase and the defendants were identified by several eyewitnesses.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Seth Goldman of the District Attorney’s Violent Criminal Enterprises Bureau, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Nicole Chavis, Bureau Chief, and the overall supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney William E. Schaeffer, Chief of the District Attorney’s Investigations Division.