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Queens Chronicle

DA charges five with witness intimidation

Case stems from attempted murder charge against alleged gang leader

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Posted: Thursday, May 22, 2014 10:30 am | Updated: 11:32 am, Thu May 29, 2014.

Five reputed gang members, including the alleged leader of the Every Body Killers street crew, have been charged with intimidating a witness in an attempted murder case.

Queens District Attorney Richard Brown, in a joint statement with NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton, said Friday that Kamal Joseph 20, of Elmont, LI; Angel Alvarez, 21, Nadine Massillon, 24, and Brandon Ward, 21, all of Jamaica; and Christopher Baptiste, 19, of Queens Village; have been charged in connection with allegations that Joseph fired multiple shots at another person last August.

Joseph has been held without bail since October on charges of second-degree attempted murder and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon for shooting “multiple rounds” at an intended victim on Aug. 3.

According to Brown, Joseph allegedly told Baptiste in a phone call on Oct. 20 “that the witness in his attempted murder case should not appear before the grand jury hearing,” said that “Baptiste and Ward should talk to the witness.”

The complaint alleges that in a phone conversation on Oct. 22, Joseph told an unidentified man to make sure people were outside the Queens Criminal Courthouse in Kew Gardens the following day; and that on Oct. 23, Ward, Baptiste, Alvarez and a number of other people gathered there “in an effort to intimidate the witness from testifying before the grand jury by instilling fear in the witness.”

Later, after Joseph was indicted, Massillon allegedly told him that seven people were outside the courthouse but had not seen the witness. Ward then allegedly got on the phone to say he had called the witness twice.

Massillon then allegedly threatened the witness three times in November and December 2013, while Alvarez is accused of attempting to bribe the witness in November.

“Prospective witnesses must be protected from outside interference intended to prevent them from testifying at a grand jury or trial,” Brown said. “This office will not tolerate the intimidation of, or tampering with witnesses and is committed to the vigorous prosecution of those who engage in such conduct.”

Joseph is charged with first-degree intimidating a victim or a witness, fifth-degree conspiracy and two counts of third-degree tampering with a witness.

Alvarez is charged with bribing a witness, first-degree intimidating a victim or witness, fifth-degree conspiracy and two counts of third-degree tampering with a witness.

Massillon faces five counts of first-degree intimidating a victim or witness; six of third-degree witness tampering, three of second-degree aggravated harassment and a single count of fifth-degree conspiracy.

Baptiste and Ward have been charged with two counts of third-degree tampering with a witness and single counts of fifth-degree conspiracy and first-degree intimidating a witness.

Joseph, Ward and Baptiste all are being held without bail, and face up to four years in prison if convicted on all charges.

Alvarez, who faces up to seven years, had bail set at $50,000. Massillon faces up to four years and had bail set at either $25,000 cash or a $50,000 bond.

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