An Edgemere man was indicted in the murder of 10-year-old Justin Wallace in Arverne during a 2021 drive-by shooting that was allegedly sparked by an argument over a shared parking spot between neighbors.
Ashram Lochan, 29, of Beach 45th Street, was arraigned Aug. 10 in Queens Supreme Court on a six-count indictment charging him with murder in the second degree, attempted murder in the second degree, assault in the first degree, two counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree and tampering with physical evidence.
Lochan allegedly acted in concert with 31-year-old Jovan Young of Arverne, whose murder case is pending.
According to a timeline of events and the charges, on June 5, 2021, Lochan had a dispute with 29-year-old Kyle Forrester, who lived next door on Beach 45th Street, over their shared driveway. Later that day, at approximately 9:33 p.m., Young, acting at Lochan’s direction, fired a pistol multiple times into Forrester’s residence and in his direction as he entered his front door. At the time, there were multiple children inside of the house including Wallace. Forrester was struck three times in his back, once in his neck and once in his hand. His nephew Justin, a 5th-grade student at Challenge Charter School, suffered a deadly gunshot wound to the heart as he was standing by the doorway.
EMS responded to the crime scene and rushed the youngster to St. John’s Episcopal Hospital in Far Rockaway where he was declared dead. His uncle was rushed to Jamaica Hospital Center where he was treated for his gunshot wounds and survived. Young was arrested two days later and indicted by a Queens grand jury and criminally charged with murder, assault, and weapons charges.
“The plague of gun violence, one senseless shooting after another, claims one life after another in our communities,” Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said. “In this case, the life claimed was that of a young boy, days away from just his eleventh birthday. We will seek justice on his behalf and continue fighting as hard as we can against the scourge of gun violence.”
Queens Supreme Court Justice Michael Yavinsky ordered Lochan to return to court Sept. 26. If convicted, he faces up to life in prison. Lochan remains detained at Rikers Island awaiting trial.