By Philip Newman
D’aja Robinson, 14, was on her way home from a Sweet Sixteen party when a bullet smashed a window on a Q6 bus she had just boarded and killed her. Now, nearly three years later, Kevin McClinton, 24, has been convicted of her murder.
The conviction of McClinton came following a three-week trial before Queens Supreme Court Justice Gregory Lasak. McClinton, of Rosedale, has been held without bail since his arrest and extradition from South Carolina in November 2013. He faces 25 years to life in prison on sentencing on June 8,2016.
Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said the girl was en route home from a party the evening of May 18, 2013, when she walked to a bus stop at 125-60 Sutphin Blvd. in Jamaica.
Authorities allege that Shamel Capers, then 15, of Brooklyn opened fire at the Q6 bus and McClinton, then 21, grabbed the handgun from Capers and resumed the gunfire, striking D’aja in the head. She was dead on arrival at a Queens hospital.
Capers, arrested July 14, 2014, is awaiting trial.
Raymond Kelley, the New York City police commissioner at the time, said he did not believe McClinton intended to kill D’Aja, but was firing at someone else in the bus.
“As we near the sad third anniversary of the death of this young and talented 14-year-old, let her loved ones take a modicum of comfort in the knowledge that her killer has been brought to justice and now faces spending the rest of his life in prison when he is sentenced June 8,” Brown said.
The slain girl was a student at Cmapus Magnet High School in Cambria Heights.
On the first anniversary of D’aja’s death, dozens of friends and supporters of the slain child’s family held a walk which formed at 116th Road and Sutphin Boulevard and proceeded to the site where D’aja, an only child, was killed
The victim’s cousin, Glenda Daniels, said it rained on the mourners.
“It was sad, but it was beautiful,” she said.
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