FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 15, 2015
Brooklyn Handyman Sentenced to 25 Years to Life in Prison
For Murdering His Boss
Defendant Bragged on Tape That He Dismembered the Body, Which Was Never Recovered
Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson today announced that a former handyman who boasted about his crime on a secret audio recording has been sentenced to 25 years to life in prison. The defendant was convicted last month of killing and dismembering a 55-year-old Brooklyn property owner whose body was never found.
District Attorney Thompson said, “Even though we didn’t have a body, we were determined to get justice for Bruce Blackwood and his family. And that’s exactly what we did by using the defendant’s own words to convict him.”
The District Attorney identified the defendant as Luis Perez, 50, formerly of 983 Hancock Street, in Bushwick, Brooklyn. He was sentenced today to 25 years to life in prison by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun, who presided over a jury trial last month in which the defendant was convicted of one count of second-degree murder.
The District Attorney said that, according to trial testimony, the victim, Bruce Blackwood, owned several properties in Brooklyn and hired the defendant to work in some of the apartments, which he was preparing to rent out. At some point, however, the victim discovered that the defendant stole the victim’s checkbook and cashed multiple checks against the victim’s account, totaling $7,700.
According to the evidence presented at trial, the victim confronted the defendant about the stolen checks on March 6, 2006, at one of the victim’s properties at 983 Hancock Street, where the defendant was living at the time. The defendant, who had a criminal history and did not want to return to prison, then killed the victim, and disposed of his body, according to 3 ½ hours of audiotape secretly recorded by the defendant’s daughter.
In the audiotape, the defendant told his daughter how he choked the victim and then used a machete to cut up his body and dispose of it in construction-grade plastic bags. He then told her that he used hospital-grade bleach to clean up the crime scene.
“It’s not about committing the perfect crime, it’s just about how well you clean it up,” the defendant boasted on the audiotape. The defendant told his daughter that he killed Mr. Blackwood to avoid going to prison for stealing his checks and cashing them, though he ultimately was convicted of that crime and was sentenced to two to four years in prison. He was arrested for the murder last year.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Melissa Carvajal of the District Attorney’s Homicide Bureau, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Kenneth Taub, Bureau Chief.