THREE MEN INDICTED BY GRAND JURY IN DEATH OF BRONX MAN SHOT AT RUFUS KING PARK LAST YEAR
Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz, joined by New York City Police Department Commissioner Dermot Shea, announced that Chance Goode, Torren King and Jabari Curtis have been indicted by a Queens County grand jury and arraigned in Supreme Court on murder charges and other crimes in the shooting death of a young man in Rufus King Park in Jamaica, Queens on October 15, 2020.
District Attorney Katz said, “As alleged, the defendants orchestrated and carried out a brazen robbery scheme that resulted in the broad daylight murder of a 22-year-old man, at a park frequented by children and teenagers. We must stop the scourge of gun violence in our communities.”
Police Commissioner Shea said, “Gun violence has no place in New York City or anywhere. We are committed to finding those who are responsible and holding them to account. I commend the investigators and prosecutors whose efforts resulted in these indictments.”
Goode, of Jamaica, Queens, and King, of Rockaway, Queens, both 18, and Curtis, 22, of St. Albans, Queens, were arraigned yesterday before Queens Supreme Court Justice Lenora Gerald on a nine-count indictment. The defendants are charged with murder in the second degree, attempted robbery in the first and second degree, criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree and conspiracy in the fourth degree. Justice Gerald set a return date for July 19, 2021. If convicted, the defendants face up to 25 years-to-life in prison.
According to the charges, at approximately 4:30 p.m. on October 15, 2020, victim Numani Lambert, 22, and two others arrived at Rufus King Park after an alleged arrangement had been made on Facebook to sell marijuana to a buyer who went by the online name “Pimmy Don.” As Mr. Lambert and his two companions walked in the park, one of his friends used Facebook to send messages to “Pimmy Don,” who responded that he was sending his “boys” to make the cash-for-marijuana exchange.
Continuing, said the DA, the group of three met with two males in the park, one of whom was defendant King. There was a dispute between the groups on the money changing hands before the marijuana and when King refused to hand over the cash, Mr. Lambert and his friends turned and walked away. That’s when King called them back and with Mr. Lambert directly in front of him, the defendant allegedly pulled out a gun and stated, “Now you have to give it to me.”
As outlined in the charges, King allegedly fired two shots at Mr. Lambert. A single bullet hit the Bronx resident in the head. He died three days later at a nearby hospital.
DA Katz said that during a Court-authorized search of defendant Goode’s home, police allegedly recovered the murder weapon, a 9mm Luger, along with nine rounds of ammunition. Goode was later identified as the would-be buyer “Pimmy Don,” who had arranged the meeting on Facebook with one of the victim’s friends. Goode also allegedly sent King to rob the three and instructed defendant Curtis to drive King to the park, wait for him to rob them and then drive them away from the scene.
The investigation was conducted by Detective Patrick Norcott, of the New York City Police Department’s 103rd Precinct Detective Squad, under the supervision of Lieutenant Steven Faber, Commanding Officer, Detective Kevin Granger, of the Queens South Homicide Squad, along with Detectives Carlos Segovia and Daniel Sjoberg, of the Queens South Violent Crimes Squad, under the supervision of Sergeant Edward Scali of the Queens South Violent Crimes Squad.
Assistant District Attorney Barry Frankenstein, a Section Chief in the District Attorney’s Violent Criminal Enterprises Bureau, and Assistant District Attorney Diana Schioppi, are prosecuting the case, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorneys Jonathan Sennett, Bureau Chief, Michelle Goldstein, Senior Deputy Bureau Chief, and under the overall supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney for Investigations Gerard Brave.
**Criminal complaints and indictments are accusations. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.