FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, May 10, 2023
East Flatbush Man Sentenced to 15 Years to Life in Prison
For Killing Brooklyn Rapper
Defendant Fatally Shot Victim in Chest After Dispute Over Stolen Cellphone
Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez today announced that an East Flatbush man has been sentenced to 15 years to life in prison for fatally shooting a 30-year-old Brooklyn rapper after a dispute over a stolen cellphone in 2017.
District Attorney Gonzalez said, “This was a tragic and senseless shooting of a man who had his life and budding musical career tragically cut short. Brooklyn is safer with this defendant behind bars, and today’s sentence sends a strong message that gun violence in our neighborhoods will be met with serious consequences.”
The District Attorney identified the defendant as James Oliver, 44, of East Flatbush, Brooklyn. The defendant was sentenced today by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun to 15 years to life in prison. The defendant pleaded guilty to second-degree murder on April 26, 2023.
The District Attorney said that, according to the evidence, on December 2, 2017, at approximately 10 p.m., inside the lobby of a building at 80 East 92nd Street, in East Flatbush, the defendant and victim, Darnell Pettway, 30, were drinking and gambling with a group of men. The defendant got into a fight with another individual over a stolen cellphone and became enraged when Pettway did not intervene on his behalf. According to the evidence, the defendant then left the location and went to his apartment at 87 East 93rd Street where he was recorded by video surveillance putting a gun into his waistband. The defendant then went back to 80 East 92nd where he shot Pettway several times in the chest.
Pettway, a rapper who performed under the stage “Mook Mula,” was taken to Kings County Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
The defendant fled to Pennsylvania. He was arrested on Jan. 1, 2019, in Upper Saucon Township, after being arrested for an unrelated incident.
The District Attorney thanked Homicide Paralegal Amanda Connolly and Digital Evidence Lab Intelligence Analyst Austin Fedchock for their assistance on the case.
The case was prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Matthew Midey of the District Attorney’s Homicide Bureau, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Leila Rosini, Homicide Bureau Chief.