A Jamaica man has been charged with hate crimes for shooting at victims who were driving through his neighborhood, according to the Queens District Attorney’s office.
Yosef Aranbayev, 41, of Radnor Road, was charged with attempted murder as a hate crime after he followed a vehicle, pulled out a gun and allegedly fired on the people inside the vehicle.
Aranbayev was arraigned Sunday night before Queens Criminal Court Judge Eugene Guarino on a complaint that included multiple charges ranging from attempted murder, attempted assault, and reckless driving.
Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said that just before 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 6, at the intersection of 73rd Avenue and Parsons Boulevard, an officer in a police vehicle that was stopped by a traffic light observed a black Chevy Tahoe speeding toward him on the wrong side of the street. The driver pulled along the police vehicle and told officers that someone was following them and pointed to an on-coming black Dodge Durango and said they had shot at him.
The defendant in the Durango was observed by police cutting through a gas station parking lot to avoid a traffic light. Moments later the police pulled the car over and the defendant allegedly told them, “I’m sorry officer, I didn’t do anything wrong. They were scouting my whole neighborhood the whole day.”
Aranbayev, who said others were helping him, also told police that, “I was chasing those guys. We’re chasing them out of our neighborhood,” according to the charges.
Katz added that the police allegedly recovered a loaded gun and one spent shell inside the .357 revolver which Aranbayev allegedly admitted that he had fired the saying, “I wasn’t shooting to kill them, just shooting to scare them.”
The defendant was immediately taken into custody.
“Public streets belong to everyone and it offends the public conscience to think that someone believes they have the right to chase down and shoot at anyone because they think they’re not from the neighborhood,” Katz said. “This could have ended with someone getting killed. The defendant is accused of being a vigilante hell-bent on clearing his neighborhood of the 2 black men who drove through. The defendant is being charged with numerous hate crimes and will be held accountable for his alleged actions.”
Judge Guarino held Aranbayev on $50,000 bond/$25,000 cash bail and ordered him to return to court on Sept. 15. If convicted, the defendant faces between 8 and 25 years in prison.