Two years ago today, a man was killed on 36th Avenue near 14th Street.
Today, Judge Kenneth Holder sentenced Javyn McNish, now 21, from the Ravenswood Houses, to 25 years to life, for slaying Jerell Lewis, 20, from Queensbridge, at 4:10PM on December 2, 2017.
On that day, McNish’s friend told him that he’d been in a fight with Lewis, accounts found. McNish then, is said to have chased Lewis into the street near the Ravenswood Houses. He then shot at Lewis three times, say reports, hitting him in the chest, torso and the arm or hand. A bullet to the spinal chord is said to have paralyzed Lewis. McNish is said to have then pistol-whipped Lewis, knocking out two of his teeth. Lewis died later at Mount Sinai Hospital.
McNish, seen on surveillance video, was later found in an apartment with a 9mm semi-automatic pistol. He was charged two days after the death with murder and criminal possession of a weapon.
Within days, leaders of the communities at Queensbridge, Ravenswood, Astoria and Woodside houses, including Bishop Mitchell Taylor, launched a “Murder No More” campaign.
At the time, Queens Ledger reported that Lewis was a member of 696 Build Queensbridge, a Cure Violence interrupter program. “Lewis was in the process of change,” K. Bain, the organization’s director told the Ledger. Lewis stepped into the 696 office the day before he was shot, Bain said, and someone asked him to talk to young people about his transformation.
Nevertheless, one of McNish’s relatives cried out in the court room to Lewis’ mother that her son was “a piece of s—,” the New York Daily News reported today. “He was a notorious person,” the woman yelled.
“This is about the dumbest case I’ve seen in here,” Judge Holder said to McNish today, the Daily News reports. “Because you have no justification … This was filmed by 20 cameras… How stupid is that? What were you thinking? You have no right to be walking amongst the citizens.”