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Queens Chronicle

Cops say they arrested Francisco Leal shooter

Suspect in custody a year after death

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Posted: Thursday, May 15, 2014 10:30 am | Updated: 11:56 am, Thu May 22, 2014.

Clarence Scott, a 29-year-old from Far Rockaway, was arrested on Monday in connection with the murder of Francisco Leal on Feb. 2, 2013.

The shooting occurred on the corner of 21st Street and 41st Avenue in front of a bodega near the Queensbridge Houses in Long Island City at 9:40 p.m.

Leal, a native of the complex who had since moved to Manhattan, was shot once in the chest, allegedly by Scott.

Video surveillance captured footage of what appeared to be two men wearing hoodies near the crime scene.

One of the males drew a weapon and shot Leal in the chest before running away.

The police reported that the man in the video is Scott.

Almost immediately after the shooting, community members and officials, including Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnyside) and Bishop Mitchell Taylor, took to the streets.

Legislators, including state Sen. Jose Peralta (D-East Elmhurst), asked for more gun regulations and afterschool options for middle and high school students.

During a press conference held a few days after Leal was shot, Taylor, Van Bramer and Queensbridge Tenant Association President April Simpson called on the community to come forward with any information.

“Someone lost a child ... ,” Simpson said at the time. “That could be my child. That could be your child. All hands on deck. Someone saw something.”

In December 2013, the police identified a Lawrence Scott as a suspect but on May 15, the NYPD reported that Clarence Scott was the suspect and had been apprehended.

The NYPD could not verify if Lawrence was used as an alias by Scott or if the original suspect was a different person.

Scott is charged with murder and criminal possession of a weapon.

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