East Flatbush man gets 15 years for killing Brooklyn rapper Mook Mula

May 11, 2023 Rob Abruzzese
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District Attorney Eric Gonzalez announced on Wednesday that James Oliver, a 44-year-old East Flatbush man, has been sentenced to 15 years to life in prison for the fatal shooting of 30-year-old Brooklyn rapper Darnell Pettway in 2017. 

“This was a tragic and senseless shooting of a man who had his life and budding musical career tragically cut short,” Gonzalez said. “Brooklyn is safer with this defendant behind bars, and today’s sentence sends a strong message that gun violence in our neighborhoods will be met with serious consequences.”

The dispute that led to the shooting was over a stolen cell phone.

Oliver pleaded guilty to second-degree murder on April 26, 2023, and was sentenced by Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun. 

According to evidence presented in court, the incident occurred on December 2, 2017, at around 10 p.m. inside the lobby of a building at 80 East 92nd Street in East Flatbush. Oliver and Pettway were among a group of men drinking and gambling when Oliver got into a fight with another individual over a stolen cell phone.

Pettway, who performed under the stage name “Mook Mula,” did not intervene on Oliver’s behalf, which enraged the defendant. Oliver then left the location, went to his apartment at 87 East 93rd Street, and was recorded by video surveillance putting a gun into his waistband. He returned to the scene of the dispute and shot Pettway several times in the chest.

Pettway was taken to Kings County Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Oliver fled to Pennsylvania, where he was arrested on Jan. 1, 2019, in Upper Saucon Township following an unrelated incident.


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