Two alleged gang members from Jamaica face attempted murder charges in a violent knife attack on a teenage boy at the Jamaica LIRR station this summer, prosecutors announced on Monday.
Dani Cruz, 25, of Princeton Street, and Maxwell Martinez, 24, of 164th Street, both of whom are alleged members of the MS-13 street gang, were in custody on Oct. 15 and arraigned on charges of second-degree attempted murder and and first- and second-degree assault. Both defendants are currently being held on $75,000 bond or $50,000 cash bail and are due to return to court on Oct. 31.
If convicted, both Cruz and Martinez face up to 25 years in prison, according to Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown.
According to charges, at 10:25 p.m. on Aug. 31, Cruz and Martinez approached an unidentified 17-year-old boy, who was riding his bike, in the vicinity of Sutphin Boulevard and 94th Avenue. The defendants proceeded to hit the teen with an unknown object, causing the boy to fall to the ground.
Prosecutors said that Cruz and Martinez allegedly continued to beat the victim and then pulled out a knife and stabbed the teen multiple times in the back, torso and arm before fleeing the scene.
Officers from the 103rd Precinct responded to the incident. The victim was taken to an area hospital for treatment and ultimately suffered extensive nerve damage to his arm and required surgery.
Cops located Cruz and Martinez soon after the attack, several blocks away at a bodega located at 143-09 95th Ave. They were arrested on unrelated charges. According to the criminal complaint, Cruz was found inside the store while Martinez was located behind the building trying to gain access through the basement.
In arresting the pair, cops noticed that Cruz and Martinez’s clothing and shoes had been smeared with fresh blood. The clothing was taken to the Office of the Medical Examiner for DNA testing, where it was determined that the blood matched the victim’s blood.
Even so, Cruz and Martinez made statements to police denying that they took part in the heinous crime.
The criminal complaint indicates that Cruz stated in sum and substance at the time of his arrest that he “was in the deli the entire time. I never left,” and allegedly admitted that he was a member of the MS-13 gang. Cruz allegedly added that he was “drinking and did not remember what happened that night.”
Martinez, who also allegedly admitted to being a member of the MS-13 gang, stated that said “the blood on my pants are from cuts I have. I had one construction accident … I did not stab anyone.”
“The two defendants in this case are alleged to be members of the notorious MS-13 street gang. A young man, just a teenager, was viciously beaten and stabbed repeatedly and is lucky to be alive today,” Brown said. “This kind of brutality is unacceptable in a civilized society and shows a disregard for human life. The two defendants face a long term of incarceration for this heinous crime.”
Updated at 12:55 p.m.