Train operator convicted of killing a Forest Hills celebrity jeweler during a fit of road rage: DA

Aron "Eric" Aranbayev of Forest Hills was killed in July 2015 after an irate driver struck and killed him with his vehicle following an argument.
Photo courtesy of NYPD/Inset via Instagram, @rafaello_eric

A former MTA train operator was convicted last week for using his car to kill a Forest Hills jeweler following a traffic dispute more than two years ago, prosecutors announced.

Charles Jordan, 48, of Valley Stream was found guilty of first-degree manslaughter and felony leaving the scene of an accident, Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown said. He faces up to 25 years to life in prison when he is sentenced on March 12.

“The victim’s death rose out of a petty dispute on a residential street that ended with a 40-year-old man fatally injured,” Brown said in a Feb. 9 statement. “The defendant rammed a 1,000-plus pound vehicle into the victim and knocked him to the ground, where he hit his head. This was a senseless and violent death that could have easily been avoided.”

Just after 11 p.m. on the night of July 19, 2015, prosecutors said, Aron “Eric” Aranbayev — a married father of four who served celebrity clients out of his jewelry store in Manhattan’s Diamond District — exited from a vehicle on 71st Avenue when Jordan drove by at a high rate of speed inside a dark blue 2005 Dodge Magnum. This led to a brief confrontation between Aranbayev and Jordan, who had backed up his vehicle to argue with the victim.

Moments later, authorities said, Jordan backed up his vehicle a second time and struck Aranbayev with his vehicle, causing him to hit the pavement. Jordan then sped away from the scene.

Officers from the 112th Precinct and EMS responded to the incident. Aranbayev died shortly thereafter as a result of brain damage and a skull fracture.

Jordan was apprehended nearly a week later through a joint investigation by the Queens North Homicide Squad and the 112th Precinct Detective Squad.

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