Queens Man Sentenced to 75 Years in Prison for One-Night Crime Spree Of Shootings, Carjackings and Assaults in Crown Heights

Monday, December 18, 2017


Queens Man Sentenced to 75 Years in Prison for One-Night Crime Spree
Of Shootings, Carjackings and Assaults in Crown Heights

Defendant Shot a Man, Carjacked Vehicles and Shot at a Group

Acting Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez today announced that a 32-year-old Queens man has been sentenced to 75 years in prison for a 2014 crime spree in Crown Heights in which the defendant shot a man, carjacked two vehicles at gunpoint, pistol-whipped a driver, shot at a group of people and broke into a home.

Acting District Attorney Gonzalez said, “This defendant turned a summer evening into a frightening reign of terror, hurting and threatening innocent people, carjacking vehicles and committing a startling array of brazen acts. Today’s sentence holds him accountable, and we hope it helps to ease some of the painful memories of that day for those whose lives were so violently and suddenly disrupted.”

The Acting District Attorney identified the defendant as Clinton Lawson, 32, of Jamaica, Queens. He was sentenced today by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice ShawnDya Simpson to 75 years in prison. The defendant was convicted of second-degree attempted murder and multiple counts of assault, robbery, criminal possession of a weapon, reckless endangerment and criminal mischief following a jury trial earlier this year.

The Acting District Attorney said that, according to the investigation, on July 19, 2014, at approximately 5:10 p.m., the defendant shot a man inside of 1381 Sterling Place in Crown Heights. After fleeing the location, the defendant approached a 2010 Toyota Corolla that was stopped while the driver was dropping off a passenger near Eastern Parkway and Utica Avenue. The defendant threatened to shoot the driver, a 65-year-old man, and ordered him out of the car. When the driver didn‘t move fast enough, the defendant struck him in the face with the gun. The driver left the vehicle, which the defendant then drove off in.

Shortly thereafter, according to the investigation, the defendant crashed the vehicle into multiple parked cars near St. Johns Place and Kingston Avenue. Following the crash, a group of people began to chase the defendant, who turned and fired two shots at the group, but luckily no one was struck.

According to the investigation, the defendant then approached another vehicle, a Nissan Xterra stopped at a red light on Brooklyn Avenue, and, at gunpoint, ordered that driver out of the vehicle. The driver complied and the defendant drove off in the Nissan. A few minutes later, the defendant crashed this vehicle, ran through a parking lot and broke into a house at 810 Sterling Place. The defendant fled after being confronted by the tenants and was arrested outside the building.

A loaded .25 caliber pistol and a shell casing were recovered from the basement of 810 Sterling Place. The firearm matched ballistics from the shooting following the crash of the Toyota Corolla and from the shooting at 1381 Sterling Place.

The case was investigated by New York City Police Department Detective Michael Bennett of the 77th Precinct Detective Squad and Police Officer Arnold Murphy, under the supervision of Lieutenant Patrick Hamilton, of the 77th Precinct.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Kori Medow, Deputy Bureau Chief of the District Attorney’s Trial Bureau Orange Zone, and Assistant District Attorney Niki Bargueiras, also of the Orange Zone, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Janet Gleeson, Bureau Chief.