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College Pt. man guilty of slaying

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A College Point man last week was convicted of murdering an 84-year-old woman who he believed had helped evict his family from their apartment, authorities said.

Christopher Rodriguez, 27, who lived at 22-10 121st St. in College Point, was convicted of murder in the first and second degree, burglary, criminal possession of a weapon and criminal possession of stolen property, said Queens District Attorney Richard Brown. He will be sentenced on March 12 and faces a possible sentence of life in prison without the chance of parole, said the district attorney.

State Supreme Court Justice Arthur J. Cooperman presided over the jury trial in Kew Gardens.

Rodriguez was found guilty of killing Winifred Rodriguez, who lived alone in College Point, in June 1999, Brown said. The two were not related.

“This was a vicious and unprovoked murder of an 84-year-old woman who lived alone,” said Brown. “[Rodriguez’s] conviction ensures that he will spend the rest of his life in jail.”

According to the district attorney, the two had once lived in the same building in College Point. After Christopher Rodriguez’s family was evicted from the building, he mistakenly came to believe that the eviction stemmed from Winifred Rodriguez’s complaining about his family, the DA said.

“The defendant thought that she had had his family evicted from the building and made the decision to kill her,” said Brown.

The district attorney said sometime between June 26 and June 29, 1999, the defendant climbed through Winifred Rodriguez’s window armed with a knife. Once in her living room, he stabbed the elderly woman 13 times and then dragged her into the foyer, leaving a trail of blood, said the district attorney.

Jose Perez of Flushing acted as a lookout for the crime. He pleaded guilty to manslaughter in January and is awaiting sentencing, Brown said.

College Point, with a population of 25,598, according to the latest census, has had a low murder rate in recent years. Since the beginning of 2000 only one murder has occurred in College Point up until now, according to the 109th Precinct. On Feb. 19, 2000, Raymond Hernandez, 21, was murdered in the Metropolis Nightclub.

Reach reporter Alexander Dworkowitz by e-mail at Timesledger@aol.com or call 229-0300, Ext. 141.

Posted 7:02 pm, October 10, 2011
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