A Queens man who fled to Indiana after allegedly stabbing a man to death in Jamaica has been arrested and charged with murder, Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced on Thursday, April 23.
Muhammad Habib, a 24-year-old man from Jamaica, was charged with murder in the second, degree, criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree, tampering with a witness in the third degree and assault in the third degree for his alleged participation in a dispute that led to the murder of Wycliffe Gentles. Habib was found in Indiana a day after the murder and led police in a car chase that would eventually lead to his arrest.
On April 13, around 10 a.m., Habib was seen fighting with the property owner of 106-09 Guy R. Brewer Blvd., inside the building, according to the charges. Gentles, 43, attempted to break-up the fight but Habib began to fight with Gentles instead, according to the DA.
Habib then pulled out what appeared to be a knife and Gentles reached for a nearby object, the DA said. Gentles then hit Habib over the head with the object.
Habib began to chase Gentles down a flight of stairs and the two continued the fight outside of the building. At one point, Gentles dropped a wooden plank he had picked up in the stairwell and fell to the ground, according to the DA.
Habib then stood over Gentles and allegedly stabbed him seven times, penetrating his chest, lung and pulmonary artery. The wounds would eventually lead to his death.
Habib then fled the scene only to text, “snitches get treated the same,” the property owner with whom he originally fought.
The next day, Habib was arrested in Hancock County, Indiana by the Pro-Active Criminal Enforcement Team, which had spotted the Habib’s car while patrolling the interstate, according to the DA. The NYPD had placed a felony alert on the vehicle following Gentles’ stabbing. Habib was arrested only after leading police on a car chase through two Indiana counties.
Habib is being held without bail and will return to court on May 20. If convicted, Habib faces a sentence of 25 years to life in prison.