FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, August 2, 2017
Brooklyn Man Convicted of Murder for Fatal Shooting of East Williamsburg Metal Worker during Crime Spree
Victim Shot in the Chest after Confronting Defendant, Who was Breaking into Cars
Acting Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez today announced that a 22-year-old man has been convicted of murder, attempted murder, assault and criminal possession of a weapon for the 2015 fatal shooting of Michael Matusiak, a 53-year-old worker at a sheet metal shop in East Williamsburg.
Acting District Attorney Gonzalez said, “Michael Matusiak was a beloved father who was senselessly shot to death after standing up to this defendant, who was breaking into cars. Mr. Matusiak should be alive today but for the brazen and callous actions of this defendant, who also shot two other people that morning including an innocent 13-year-old girl. He has now been held accountable.”
The Acting District Attorney identified the defendant as Bryan Aponte, 22, of Bushwick, Brooklyn. He was convicted today of one count of second-degree murder, one count of second-degree attempted murder, one count of second-degree assault, and one count of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon, following a jury trial presided over by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Neil Firetog. Sentencing was set for August 30, 2017, at which time the defendant faces up to 57 years to life in prison
The Acting District Attorney said that, according to trial testimony, on October 6, 2015, at approximately 7:50 a.m., the defendant was spotted breaking into and ransacking cars at the corner of Grattan Street and Knickerbocker Avenue in East Williamsburg, Brooklyn. He was confronted by Michael Matusiak, 53, and another man, 57, both workers at the nearby ABNY sheet metal shop.
After Matusiak shouted at the defendant, he turned around and fired, striking Matusiak in the chest and buttock. The 57-year-old man was shot in the torso and in the ear. A 13-year-old girl was shot in the hip by a stray bullet as she walked to school. Matusiak died at the scene. The other victims were treated at Elmhurst Hospital and released.
The defendant was arrested three weeks later in East New York, Brooklyn, at his grandparents’ home after they called police to say he wanted to surrender.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Howard Jackson, Deputy Chief of the District Attorney’s Homicide Bureau, and Senior Assistant District Attorney Chow Xie, of the District Attorney’s Trial Bureau Grey Zone, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Timothy Gough, Homicide Bureau Chief.