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An Oakland Gardens judge whose home was riddled by bullets last year has been promoted to top administrative judge at the Queens Supreme Court’s Criminal Term in Kew Gardens, a court spokeswoman said.
Fernando Camacho, 48, was appointed to the administrative post May 6 after having served as head of the borough’s Integrated Domestic Violence Court. In his new post, he will supervise 25 Supreme Court justices and 13 lower court judges.
Camacho, who succeeds Supreme Court Justice Jeremy Weinstein, will also be designated as an acting Supreme Court justice.
The judge, who attended Fordham University’s School of Law, first worked as a Manhattan prosecutor before being appointed to the Queens Criminal Court in 1997 and to the Court of Claims in 2008.
In the 1990s, he was part of a team that helped bring down Jheri Curls, a notorious Dominican narcotics ring that operated in Washington Heights.
On Aug. 12, two bullets were fired into the judge’s 64th Avenue home in Oakland Gardens and another two struck the side of the house, but Camacho was on vacation with his family at that time.
Two Oakland Gardens roommates — Robert Reyes, 19, and Christopher Panisse, 21, both of whom live on 69th Avenue — and Bayside’s Ezra Barashy, 20, were arraigned on charges of criminal possession of a weapon, reckless endangerment and criminal mischief in the incident, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said.
The defendants, who were scheduled to return to court this week, could face up to 15 years in prison if convicted.
Barashy allegedly fired the rounds from a 9 mm pistol in Camacho’s home around 4 a.m. and then put the gun in a bag filled with bricks and tossed it off a Bronx pier into the ocean, the DA said. Police later found the weapon on a Bronx shore and matched the fired bullets found lodged in the judge’s home to the weapon, Brown said.
The shooting caused an estimated $250 in damage to the judge’s home, the DA said.
According to published reports, the judge’s house may have been targeted after he broke up a fight in the neighborhood several days prior to the incident.
Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e−mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 718−229−0300, Ext. 156.
©2009 Community Newspaper Group
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