A New York man sought retribution by killing rival gang members. Instead, he killed two innocent victims.
Now, he will spend over three decades in prison.
Last month, United States District Judge Joanna Seybert sentenced Dylan Cruz, 30, 35 years in prison for the shooting death of Anthony Richard and Ehrik Williams. Cruz pleaded guilty to racketeering in connection to two murders, attempted murder and conspiracy to commit murder.
“Dylan Cruz’s senseless, callous violence took the lives of two innocent young men and devastated their families, all because of suspected offenses against his fellow gang members and associates. The relentless efforts of this Office and our law enforcement partners resulted in Cruz being held accountable for these murders that went unsolved for years,” said Breon Peace, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York.
“Today’s sentence should send a message to all that violent actors will be held accountable for their criminal acts, no matter how long it takes.”
According to prosecutors, on July 15, 2012, Cruz followed Richard to Baldwin Harbor, New York, after he falsely assumed the victim helped the Crips to murder one of the members of his Red Lane Gorillas, a sect of the notorious Blood street gang.
The defendant waited for the victim to park his car and fired 15 shots into the vehicle, instantly killing Richard and severely wounding a passenger. Again, two years later, Cruz falsely suspected Williams as the culprit responsible for robbing one of his crew members. Next, the defendant snuck up behind the victim at Hempstead in broad daylight and fatally fired multiple gunshots.
In addition, during the gang wars in Nassau County, New York, between the Bloods, the Crips, and the 5-9 Brims, Cruz was responsible for shooting a rival gang member in Roosevelt on Nov. 17, 2010, leaving him paralyzed. Furthermore, the defendant shot another rival gang member on Feb. 20, 2016. During that incident, an innocent bystander and the rival gang member were critically wounded.
Cruz’s co-defendant, Richard Michel, also pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing.
Currently, the defendant is serving an eight-year sentence for an unrelated robbery conviction, followed by his 35-year sentence in federal prison. Cruz will be 69 years old upon his release, reported WSHU.
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