BY TRONE DOWD
An early morning shooting in Jamaica that resulted in the death of 46-year-old deli clerk Mamadou N. Diallo last Saturday has the Southeast Queens community in outrage.
On Sept. 24 at 6:33 a.m., authorities say officers responded to a 911 call of a male shot inside of Sunshine Deli located at 111-08 Merrick Boulevard, within the confines of the 113th Precinct. When police arrived on the scene, officers observed Diallo on the ground with a gunshot wound to the head, unconscious and unresponsive. When medics arrived, they declared the man deceased at the scene.
Although the NYPD was not able to confirm with the PRESS of Southeast Queens , previously published reports say Diallo was the victim of a robbery, when two robbers snuck into Sunshine Deli, grabbing Diallo from behind and ordering him to the ground. The individuals raided the cash register, grabbing a total of $61 before shooting Diallo execution style.
At press time, the police are still investigating the shooting. Since the shooting however, the community has come forth not only to condemn the shooting but to vow to bring their perpetrators of the crime to justice.
Diallo was a Guinea native. Diallo’s brother, Mamadou Bah told the PRESS of Southeast Queens that they both came to America in 1991 in hopes of “fulfilling the American Dream.” Bah, now owner of his own real estate group Bah Realty Group in Jamaica, said that his brother was a good person and beloved by the many patrons of the deli.
“Like so many immigrants from all over the world, he was here, working hard to feed his family back home,” Bah said. “Now his life is cut short by a criminal for $61. It’s very sad. We need to find the criminals behind this and bring them to justice.”
Organized by Southeast Queens civic leader Kevin Livingston, more than 50 people came out to where Diallo was shot. Amongst those individuals were elected officials and representatives, citywide clergymen and activists.
“We had a member of our community slaughtered here three days ago,” Livingston said. “What incenses me is that the community seems desensitized to the senseless violence in our community.”
Livingston and many others vowed to combat any violence in the neighborhood.
It doesn’t have to come from a cop’s gun,” he continued. “It’s more tragic when it comes from our own guns.”
Councilman I. Daneek Miller, representatives from the offices of state Sens. James Sanders Jr., Leroy Comrie and Assemblywoman Alicia Hyndman were in attendance, as well as Community Board 12 Chairwoman Adrienne Adams and Assembly hopeful Clyde Vanel.
One guest was Brooklyn resident Tony Herbert. Herbert says that he has two sons who live in Southeast Queens and finds himself repeatedly concerned with their safety. He said that he wonders when Southeast Queens residents will step up in mass to fight the gun violence issues plaguing its streets.
“We talk about it,” Herbert said. “We see it on the news and discuss it in the house. But only a handful of us get out here and make the noise. Why is that? Because more people do not engage in this fight unless it knocks on their door. Well Black folks I’ve got a message for you. There’s some folks that want your homes and want to live in your community. They don’t care what you do to get out of it, just do it and do it quickly. And we’re doing it right now.”
Police released a description of the perpetrators. One was a Black male between 5’7” and 5’9” and was wearing a red hoodie and black pants. The second individual was a Black male also 5’7” to 5’9” and was wearing a dark hoodie, and gray jeans.
“This stops now,” Livingston said. “These young people’s lives matter. They need to understand that when a trigger is pulled there are people that are suffering. The victim, the family, the finances. We can go on and on. This has to stop today.”
Reach Trone Dowd at (728) 357-7400 x123, email@example.com or @ theloniusly