Suspect shoots man in livery cab: cops

By Steve Mosco

A Forest Hills man was shot in a botched robbery attempt on a livery cab in Brooklyn Sunday, leaving him brain dead, police said.

Cops said Nikita Grebelsky was sitting in the backseat of the cab with his sister when Michael Magnan, 19, approached the vehicle and demanded money from the driver as the car stopped at a red light on Utica Avenue in Flatlands, Brooklyn, at 2:30 a.m. Sunday.

The driver, identified in published reports as Eric Martine, refused to turn over his money and drove away. Police said that is when Magnan allegedly opened fire, striking Nikita Grebelsky, 23, in the head.

Police said Grebelsky’s sister was not harmed during the incident.

Magnan was arrested and charged with attempted murder, assault, attempted robbery, criminal possession of a weapon and criminal mischief, authorities said, adding that Magnan has seven prior arrests.

Grebelsky was taken to Kings County Hospital, where doctors pronounced him brain dead, according to a hospital spokeswoman.

The spokeswoman also said the family is choosing to withhold any further information.

According to Grebelsky’s LinkedIn page, the Forest Hills man worked as an account manager at OysterLabs Inc., a New York-based mobile application development company. The company did not return requests for comment.

Reach reporter Steve Mosco by e-mail at [email protected] or by phone at 718-260-4546.

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