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A day after he masterminded the slaughter of five workers at a Flushing Wendys restaurant, John Taylor penned rap lyrics glorifying his deed, prosecutors revealed in court last week just before he was sentenced to death.
I had to sell some crack, weed and even kill my boss now Im the king with the crown if anybody [expletive] with me Ill Huff puff pull out the guns and slow your chump ass down, so now you know how I go, reads a handwritten page, found at the bottom of Taylors bag when he was arrested two days after the May 24, 2000 massacre.
In November, Taylor, 38, was convicted of killing Jean Auguste, 27, of Brooklyn; Anita Smith, 22, of South Jamaica; Ramon Nazario, 44, of Flushing; Ali Ibadat, 40, of Ridgewood; and Jeremy Mele, 18, of Neptune, N.J. while robbing the Main Street Wendys restaurant with his mentally-retarded accomplice, Craig Godineaux. Godineaux, 32, pleaded guilty and is currently serving a life sentence.
A week after finding Taylor guilty of all 20 counts he faced, a jury of eight men and four women decided he deserved death for the killings. Under New York state law, State Supreme Court Judge Steven Fisher had to abide by the jurys decision, and the Jan. 8 court proceeding was simply a matter of Fishers making the death sentence official. The case is automatically appealed in accordance with state law.
But victims family members, attorneys for both sides, Taylor and Fisher all spoke about the case.
The author of the rhyme read by Assistant District Attorney Daniel Saunders brags of being on the worlds most wanted show.
I said give me the doe you say no, no? is it no you said stick some lead to your head guess what punk now your dead with all that blood bursting out your Head... it reads.
A handwriting expert found the penmanship of the lyric matched Taylors, Saunders said.
During the three-week trial, prosecutors argued that Taylor was motivated in part out of revenge. He had risen to a managerial position at the Flushing Wendys but was transferred out of the fast-food restaurant to another location due to poor performance and was eventually fired from Wendys altogether.
Taylor blamed his younger boss, Jean Auguste, for his transfer, prosecutors said.
Shortly after Saunders read the rap lyric, Taylor stood up before the court, and said he was so so sorry.
I have never imagined myself to be part of something so terrible as this, he said, as many of the victims family members left the courtroom and one called for Taylor to shut up.
Growing emotional, Taylor spoke of his fate.
If taking my life will make each and every one of you feel better, take my life today, he said. Take it right now!
Taylor also had offered an apology before the jury debated the death penalty, although he spoke at greater length last week.
At the beginning of the hearing, the victims families were given the opportunity to confront Taylor in front of the packed Kew Gardens courtroom.
Benjamin Nazario, brother of Ramon, told the court that his nephew would miss growing up with a father.
When you killed my brother, you killed a piece of my mother, my brothers and sisters, and me, he said.
Staring at Taylor from across the courtroom, Nazario raised his voice, saying he was sick of seeing Taylors fat face.
I would love to see you suffer before you die, he said.
Donald Auguste, brother of Jean, praised his sibling.
He wasnt just a manager, he said. He was a family man.
During the penalty phase, the defense produced witnesses who testified that Taylor grew up poor and neglected. Two of Taylors children as well as their mother spoke, saying they loved Taylor, and he worked hard to provide for them,
But Jacqueline Hall, the mother of Jeremy Mele, said like Taylor her son had a tough life but dismissed the defenses suggestion that Taylor deserved mercy because of his background.
We lived in a tent for two summers, because I couldnt afford the summer rent, she said. He didnt get up and kill anybody. He got up and went to work.
Joan Truman Smith, the mother of Anita, proudly waived a picture of her daughter in front of Taylor.
Look at this. Take a very good look. Do you see her? she said, holding back tears. Cry, cry John Taylor. You know what you put me through.
Smith said she did not believe the death penalty is a deterrent to crime but added it was appropriate.
The pain will last forever, she said. But the death sentence will relieve some of it.
But defense attorney John Youngblood disagreed.
This is a sad and painful result, he said, one that brings more pain and sadness to a profoundly sorrowful case.
Before signing Taylors death notice, Fisher offered his feelings on the case.
In the end, there really was no answer to the question of why, he said.
Reach reporter Alexander Dworkowitz by e-mail at Timesledger@aol.com or call 229-0300, Ext. 141.
©2003 Community Newspaper Group
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