A second person has been indicted by a grand jury and arraigned in Queens Supreme Court on murder charges and other crimes in connection with the stray bullet killing of a mother of two in Woodside in March.
Benaiah Reid, 19, was arraigned on Thursday, May 13, before Queens Supreme Court Justice Michael Aloise on a three-count indictment in an alleged connection with the March 12 shooting of Gudelia Vallinas at Woodside Houses, according to Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz.
Reid is charged with murder in the second degree and two counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree. Justice Aloise placed Reid on bail and ordered his return to court later in May. If convicted, Reid faces up to 25 years to life in prison.
Reid, who resides in Woodside, was arrested in Florida in April, and brought to Queen last week.
Two other people have been arrested and charged in connection to the shooting. Dajuan Williams, 19, was arrested and charged by Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz with murder in the second degree and a weapons charge last month.
Williams, who lives in Woodside, was arraigned last month. He is due back in court in May, and if convicted, faces up to 25 years-to-life in prison.
Alexander Acevedo, 25, was also charged with criminal possession of a weapon and reckless endangerment. Acevedo, who lives in Astoria, was arraigned last month before Queens Supreme Court Justice Stephen Knopf. He faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.
According to Katz, Reid — along with Williams — allegedly fired multiple shots at Acevedo, allegedly a rival gang member. At least one of the shots was fired near the basketball court in Woodside Houses — before a single bullet struck Vallinas, Katz said.
Vallinas, who was a mother of two young children, was walking near the intersection of 48th Street and Broadway on March 12, around 8 p.m., when she was struck by the stray bullet, according to authorities.
Vallinas was rushed to Elmhurst Hospital, but succumbed to the injury that night, according to reports.
The killing devastated Vallinas’ family, local elected officials and community members, who have called for an end to gun violence and for more resources to be invested in preventative measures.
Katz said Vallinas was in the wrong place when alleged “reputed gang members started firing shots at each other.”
“Tragically, this senseless gun violence will forever impact the lives of the victim’s young children, who must now grow up without their mother,” Katz said. “This is another example of why we need to get illegal guns off our streets and why we need to hold accountable those who use them.”