Brownsville mass shooting suspect pleads not guilty to murder charge
The man accused of killing Jason Pagan in the summer’s Brownsville mass shooting pleaded not guilty to murder charges Monday in Brooklyn Supreme Court.
Kyle Williams, who is being held without bail, is charged with murder, assault, reckless endangerment and other charges for allegedly firing the first rounds and triggering a wild shootout amid a crowd of about 500 people on July 27 at the annual Old Timers Day event. Williams’ bullets struck and killed Pagan, and 11 others were injured in the cross-fire between rival groups.
Williams confessed to the crime after being arrested Oct. 16, prosecutors said, though Williams’ lawyer did not necessarily agree.
“I wouldn’t call it a confession yet,” said Edward Friedman, who is representing Williams in the case. Friedman said on Monday he received the video statement of his client allegedly confessing.
“A beloved community celebration held peacefully and joyously became chaotic and tragic when this defendant allegedly opened fire in the middle of a crowd,” said District Attorney Eric Gonzalez in a statement. “Senseless gun violence that puts innocent people in harm’s way has destroyed too many lives and will not be tolerated in Brooklyn. We will now seek to bring justice to all of the people who were impacted by this defendant’s brazen conduct.”
Family and friends of Pagan gathered in the courtroom wearing shirts that read “Justice for Jason”.
Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration committed $9 million in funding to the Brownsville community in the wake of the shooting. He initially declined to call the incident a “mass shooting” saying, “that phrase is usually reserved for a different type of situation than what I know this to be so far.”
Days later he changed course and called it a mass shooting.
Williams is due back in court on Jan. 15, in front of Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun. Williams faces up to 25 years to life imprisonment if convicted of murder.
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