A Brooklyn man who shot a 22-year-old Astoria Houses resident as he was packing up to move to North Carolina was sentenced by a Queens Supreme Court judge to 20 years to life in prison last week, the Queens district attorney’s office said.
Marcus Ayala, 22, had killed Kalif Canady in 2010 because he believed the Astoria Houses resident had been guilty of killing Ayala’s cousin, the DA said. Judge Michael Aloise imposed the sentence, the DA said.
“The defendant has now been punished for this senseless act of violence,” District Attorney Richard Brown said in a statement. “He is a threat to society and the lengthy prison sentence imposed today by the court ensures that he will not be on the streets and able to harm other citizens.”
Ayala, a member of the U.S. Coast Guard who was stationed in Norfolk, Va., had rented a car Feb. 18 and driven to Queens, the DA said. Before leaving, Ayala had told a shipmate he was going to find who the person killed his cousin, Daud Abdul-Hakim, who was murdered June 14, the DA said.
Two days later, Canady had been loading up his black 2000 GMC Denali SUV near 320 27th Ave. with his girlfriend, Cassandra Grey, when Ayala attacked, the DA said. While wearing a hoodie, Ayala approached the couple and shot Canady in his left forearm, in his thigh and twice in the head, the DA said.
Canady, who had been planning to move to North Carolina with Grey and her daughter, was pronounced dead at the scene, the DA said.
Ayala’s presence at the murder scene had been determined through cell phone records, the DA said. He had been held in prison since his arrest in June 2010, the DA said.
A Bronx resident was also sentenced last Thursday for a crime committed in Queens. Rafael Then, 28, received 23 years in prison from Judge Kenneth Holder for robbing a porter at a car dealership in Woodside, the DA said. Then had gone to Baron Auto Mall, at 55-11 Northern Blvd., Oct. 15, 2006, where he demanded at gunpoint the keys to a black 2003 Lexus GS 300 the porter had been moving, the DA said.
Officers found the Lexus at Clay Avenue and 173rd Street in the Bronx 12 days later and arrested Then after he entered the vehicle, the DA said.
“Violence such as this will not be tolerated on the streets of Queens County,” Brown said.
Reach reporter Rebecca Henely by e-mail at rhenely@cn
©2012 Community News Group
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