By Peter Sorkin
Barbara Perez, 30, who was the mother of two children, had worked at the Power Factory at 71-13 60th Lane for a year and a half. She was found dead in the early morning hours by a gym member after being shot repeatedly with a .22 caliber gun,
Last week the mayor's office announced it had contributed $10,000 for information leading to the arrest of a suspect and Crime Stoppers also announced it would contribute $1,000, said Police Officer Theresa Farello, a Police Department spokeswoman.
A gym member, Frank Borzellieri who lives three blocks away, said Perez often brought her children to the gym to work with her. He said her ex-boyfriend was the father of her youngest boy, a 2-year-old. The other child is 13.
Gilbert Martinez, who works out at the health club daily at about 6:30 a.m., found Perez's body and called police. He said he had recently moved to the Bushwick section of Brooklyn, but has been a member of the Power Factory for years.
On Aug. 11, he arrived at the gym for his usual workout, but the music was off and the windows had not yet been opened. When he went to look for Perez around the workout room, calling out her name, he could not find her. After walking to the back of the gym, he discovered Perez face up in a puddle of blood.
Martinez said Perez, who lived in Ridgewood, was loved by many who worked with her.
“She was a really wonderful person,” he said. “She was like a sister to all of us. She was a real lovely girl, always smiling, and I'm just stunned that someone would do this.”
“We're all sick over this,” Borzellieri said. “This was a close-knit gym, and everybody knew her. Barbara was there every day, she was in great shape. It's a shame.”
Anyone with information can call the Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS. All calls are confidential.