FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, April 11, 2018
Crown Heights Man Sentenced to 20 Years to Life in Prison for Shooting Worker in Alleged Illegal Brooklyn Gambling Parlor
Victim Chased the Defendant into the Street After Being Shot
Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez today announced that a 35-year-old Brooklyn man has been sentenced to 20 years to life in prison for shooting a worker inside an alleged illegal gambling parlor in East Flatbush in November 2015.
District Attorney Gonzalez said, “This defendant’s lawless behavior cost a man his life and inflicted great emotional pain on the victim’s family. He has now been held accountable for his crimes.”
The District Attorney identified the defendant as Euzebelin Abellard, 35, of Crown Heights, Brooklyn. He was sentenced yesterday by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Jane Tully to 20 years to life in prison following his conviction last month on charges of second-degree murder and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon after a jury trial.
The District Attorney said that, according to trial testimony, on November 20, 2015, at approximately 5:35 p.m., the defendant made his way into the basement of 1051 New York Avenue, in East Flatbush, Brooklyn, by walking behind a regular customer. Once inside, the victim, 51-year-old Jean Claude Bernagene, who was working at the alleged illegal parlor, stepped from behind a partition to stop the defendant. The defendant then pulled a weapon and told the victim in Creole that he would shoot him. Bernagene was shot in the torso and hand, but managed to chase the defendant up the stairs and into the street.
Responding New York City police officers found the victim outside the parlor, and a New York Yankees baseball hat on the ground near the location. The victim was taken to Kings County Hospital where he died two days later from complications of a gunshot wound to his torso.
The evidence showed that DNA recovered from the hat matched the defendant, who said he had never made it entirely into the parlor, and lost his hat while running away after hearing the gun shots. The defendant was also identified by two witnesses.
The case was prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Jamie Begley, of the District Attorney’s Homicide Bureau, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Melissa Carvajal, Deputy Bureau Chief, and the overall supervision of Assistant District Attorney Timothy Gough, Bureau Chief.