By Naeisha Rose
Investigators believe rage over a parking spot set the stage for a Far Rockway man to be accused of killing his friend when he drove his car into a crowd of onlookers, injuring five people, police said.
The rampage took place Sunday outside the XS Hookah Lounge at 127-10 Liberty Ave. in Richmond Hill.
Adrien Harry, 22, was charged with murder, attempted assault, assault, reckless endangerment and criminal possession of a weapon, the Queens district attorney said. He is being held without bail and could face 25 years to life in prison if convicted.
After a preliminary investigation, police discovered that Harry and the 23-year-old murder victim, Richardo Chattergoon, were neighbors who arrived at XS Hookah Lounge together, according to NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce.
The young men lived three minutes apart in Far Rockaway. Harry is from Beach 67th Street and Chattergoon from Beach 68th Street.
Harry and Chattergoon went to the lounge around 4:30 a.m. when the defendant bumped the white Hyundai he was operating into a parked BMW with two people inside, authorities said.
The bump did not leave any damage on the BMW, according to the police, but the occupants of the vehicle confronted Harry and Chattergoon and the situation escalated.
A fist fight ensued among the four individuals and Harry responded by allegedly stabbing at least one of the males with a knife and fled the scene, police said. Chattergoon, however, ended up on the sidewalk at the end of the fight.
Individuals in a Nissan Rogue tried to intervene but were later allegedly mowed down by Harry, who mounted the Hyundai on a sidewalk half a block away on 128th Street and hit six people, according to police.
Chattergoon, 23, was pronounced dead at the scene, and five others were sent to an area hospital, according to the criminal complaint.
His injuries were consistent with being struck and dragged by a vehicle, according to the medical examiner.
Two victims were in intensive care. The first had a brain bleed and was in a medically induced coma. The other suffered a fractured pelvis and a frontal lobe bleed on the head, which will require surgery.
The third victim had a broken nose and contusions. The fourth victim suffered from swelling to the head and bruising and swelling to a leg. The last victim suffered bruising and swelling to both legs and arms, according to the complaint.
Harry fled the scene and his vehicle was later recovered on 95th Avenue near Richmond Hill, police said.
He was later found in Richmond Hill at Jamaica Hospital and claimed to be a stabbing victim, Boyce said.
“Detectives were quick to put him on the scene, bring him back, and he admitted to the entire event. So, right now he’s charged with murder-two,” the NYPD detective said.
The DA had a few choice words for the defendant.
“What allegedly began as a minor tapping of fenders turned into a deadly pre-dawn horror show that left a young man dead and others seriously injured,” Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said. “The crimes alleged here are beyond senseless and the defendant now faces a lengthy term of incarceration if convicted.”
Harry is scheduled to return to court on Jan. 4.
Reach reporter Naeisha Rose by e-mail at nrose