GRAND JURY INDICTS TWO MEN FOR DEADLY TAXI DRIVER ATTACK
Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced today that Austin Amos, 20, and Nickolas Porter, 20, have been indicted by a Queens grand jury on charges related to a fatal attack on a 52-year-old taxi driver in Far Rockaway, Queens on August 13, 2022. The defendants repeatedly punched and kicked the victim after he confronted them for an unpaid fare. Two juvenile females also allegedly participated in the deadly incident.
District Attorney Katz said, “The alleged actions of these defendants have tragically taken the life of a hard-working family man causing his family and the entire city to grieve. My Office will hold them to account for this horrific incident and they will now face justice in our courts.”
Amos, of Beach 56 Place in Arverne, Queens, and Porter, of Hassock Street, in Far Rockaway, Queens, were both indicted yesterday by a Queens grand jury. Both defendants were arraigned last Friday, August 19, 2022 in Queens Criminal Court on a six-count complaint before Judge Diego Friere. Amos was charged with manslaughter in the first and second degrees, gang assault in the first and second degrees, assault in the second degree and theft of services. Porter was charged with gang assault in the second degree and theft of services. If convicted, Amos faces up to 25 years in prison and Porter faces up to 15 years in prison.
According to the charges, on August 13, 2022, at approximately 6:24 a.m., defendants Amos and Porter were passengers with three juvenile females in a yellow minivan taxi driven by the victim Kutin Gyimah. The group disembarked near the intersection of Beach 54th Street and Arverne Boulevard and allegedly evaded payment for their ride. The group ran off in multiple directions and Mr. Gyimah pursued them. Video surveillance footage shows Mr. Gyimah managed to catch up to one of the females and the two became involved in a struggle. Defendant Amos then circled back to Mr. Gyimah and punched him multiple times causing the victim to fall to the ground. Defendants Amos, Porter and two of the females, then surrounded Mr. Gyimah allegedly punching and kicking the victim repeatedly as he lay prone.
Continuing, said the DA, Mr. Gyimah attempted to stand. Then defendant Amos advanced and allegedly punched Mr. Gyimah twice in the face causing him to fall back and hit his head on the pavement. The entire group- defendants Amos, Porter and the three females- ran away leaving Mr. Gyimah motionless on the ground.
DA Katz said, emergency medical responders transported the victim to a local hospital where he died from blunt force trauma injuries to his head.
The investigation was conducted by Detective Neil Cusick of the 101st Queens Detective Squad with the assistance of Detective James Zozzaro of the Queens South Homicide Squad.
Assistant District Attorney Lauren Reilly, of the Career Criminal Major Crimes Bureau, is prosecuting the case, with the assistance of Assistant District Attorney Antonio Vittiglio of the Homicide Bureau, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorneys Peter J. McCormack III and John Kosinski, Senior Deputy Bureau Chiefs, and Assistant District Attorney Shawn Clark, Bureau Chief, and Assistant District Attorneys Karen Ross and Michael Whitney, Deputy Bureau Chiefs, and under the overall supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney for Major Crimes Daniel A. Saunders.
**Criminal complaints and indictments are accusations. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.