Press Release


Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced today that Dorothy Hirsch, 62, has been indicted by a Queens County grand jury on criminal possession of a weapon and other charges after eight illegal weapons, six of them semi-automatic, as well as hundreds of rounds of ammunition were allegedly found inside her apartment on 84th Road in Briarwood.

District Attorney Katz said, “As alleged, the defendant was found in possession of a cache of illegal weapons. These deadly guns, which were recovered in an apartment that she alone owns and occupies, pose an inherent danger to countless nearby residents and the community at large. My Office will continue its relentless pursuit of illegal firearms that put Queens residents in harm’s way. The defendant has been indicted.”

Hirsch, of 84th Road in Briarwood, Queens, was indicted yesterday on nine counts of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree, eight counts of Criminal Possession of a Firearm and one count of Unlawful Possession of Firearm Ammunition. She is currently pending arraignment on the charges in Queens County Supreme Court. Hirsch faces 15 years in prison, if convicted.

According to the charges, at approximately 12:05 a.m., on June 2, 2022, law enforcement officials executed a Court-authorized search warrant on the defendant’s place of residence pursuant to an investigation into the April 30th murder of Zhiwen Yan in Forest Hills. The defendant’s late husband, who was prosecuted for gunning down the victim, was allegedly seen parking in front of the 84th Road residence immediately following the murder. Records indicate that defendant Dorothy Hirsch is the sole owner and occupier of the residence where the weapons were found.

The search of the defendant’s home resulted in the discovery of eight firearms stashed inside a closet. The recovered items included: one .357 magnum revolver, one .25 caliber semi-automatic pistol, one .38 caliber revolver, one .380 caliber semi-automatic pistol, one .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol and three 9 mm semi-automatic pistols. The defendant does not have permits nor registration documentation to legally possess any of the weapons found.

Assistant District Attorney Thomas E. Salmon is prosecuting the case, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Shawn Clark, Bureau Chief, Assistant District Attorney Michael Whitney, Deputy Bureau Chief, and under the overall supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney for the Major Crimes Division Daniel A. Saunders.

**Criminal complaints and indictments are accusations. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.