Far Rockaway man convicted of murder in 2018 shooting that followed street fight: DA

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A Far Rockaway man is looking at life in prison without the possibility of parole after he was found guilty of first-degree murder in the shooting death of a neighbor in 2018.

Joaquin Bullock, 35, on Nov. 2 was convicted of murder, kidnapping and criminal possession of a weapon in the fatal shooting of fellow Far Rockaway resident Dion Smith following a two-week jury trial before Queens Supreme Court Justice Kenneth Holder.

According to trial testimony, at around 11 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 18, 2018, Bullock was captured on video surveillance arguing with several men at Beach 25th Street and Brookhaven Avenue. Bullock punched two of the men, including the 28-year-old victim, in the face. The fight ended and Bullock left the scene.

Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said that, approximately 30 minutes later, surveillance video showed Bullock returning to the scene, and grabbing Smith by the arm before he forcibly removed the victim from the intersection to a dark alley on Brookhaven Avenue, where he proceeded to shoot Smith once in his chest. Smith was rushed to St. John’s Episcopal Hospital by his acquaintances, where he later died as a result of his injuries.

“Gun violence has taken too many lives in this borough, and this verdict sends a strong message that deadly shootings will never be tolerated in Queens County,” Katz said. “We hope that the outcome of this trial provides a sense of justice to the victim’s family.”

Justice Holder indicated that he will sentence Bullock on Dec. 5, at which time he faces up to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

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