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Man gets 25 to life for Jamaica murder

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A 41-year-old Brooklyn man was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison in the 2005 slaying of his neighbor, who worked as a security guard at Long Island City's Queens Plaza, after his nephew from the Rockaways testified against him, the Queens district attorney said.

Michael Washington, of 33 Aberdeen St. in Brooklyn, was found guilty of second degree murder in April following a three-week trial in Queens Supreme Court, Queens DA Richard Brown said. He was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison by Queens Supreme Court Justice Gregory Lasak July 28, the DA said.

The defendant had also been charged with criminal possession of a weapon and tampering with physical evidence, Brown said.

On April 10, 2005, Washington and his neighbor Robert Wright, 33, who lived in Brooklyn but worked as a security guard at Queens Plaza, went for a drive in the defendant's 1996 Dodge Intrepid, the DA said.

The two men had been drinking in the car and a dispute in the vehicle resulted in the defendant shooting Wright, Brown said. The victim was shot twice in the head at close range, he said. At least one of the shots was fired in the car, the DA said.

Washington dumped the victim's body in an alleyway off 154th Street near 118th Avenue in South Jamaica, the DA said. Paul Washington, 32, the defendant's nephew, testified that his uncle ditched his car on 118th Avenue and asked him to clean its blood-stained interior, Brown said.

Paul Washington, of 144 Beach 110th St. in Rockaway Park, pleaded guilty to tampering with physical evidence and testified against his uncle as part of a deal that would keep him out of jail as long as he stays out of trouble, the DA said.

Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e-mail at news@timesledger.com or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 156.

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