A.C. man sentenced for fatal shooting during gas station robbery - NBC40.net

A.C. man sentenced for fatal shooting during gas station robbery

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ATLANTIC CITY -
Attorney General Jeffrey S. Chiesa announced that an Atlantic City man was
sentenced to state prison today for his role in an armed robbery in 2007 on the
White Horse Pike during which a gas station owner was fatally shot.
 
Darrick Hudson, 22, of Atlantic City, was sentenced to 25 years in state prison,
including 21 years of parole ineligibility under the No Early Release Act, by
Superior Court Judge Bernard E. DeLury Jr. in Atlantic County.  Hudson pleaded
guilty on Oct. 11 to aggravated manslaughter, robbery, and hindering apprehension or
prosecution.  He was about to go on trial.
 
In pleading guilty, Hudson admitted to participating in the robbery on March 9,
2007, at the AAR gas station and mini-mart on the White Horse Pike in Atlantic City.
The owner, Makhan Singh, 47, was fatally shot and an attendant, Tanzi Zepa, was
wounded.  Hudson said the reckless discharge of a co-conspirator's handgun caused
the death of Singh. He admitted, however, that when the co-conspirator dropped the
gun used to kill Singh inside the mini mart, he picked up the gun so that it would
not be recovered by law enforcement and used as evidence in the prosecution of the
murder.  
 
Deputy Attorney General Kerry DiJoseph took the guilty plea and represented the
Division of Criminal Justice at the sentencing.  The case was investigated by the
Atlantic City Police Department, Atlantic County Prosecutor's Office and Division of
Criminal Justice.  Detective Kenneth Crane led the investigation for the Division of
Criminal Justice.
 
"Because he acted as an accomplice in this violent robbery, this defendant shares
responsibility for the senseless murder of Mr. Singh, who was a husband and father,"
said Attorney General Chiesa.  "Justice demanded that he receive this lengthy prison
sentence."
 
"Four defendants have now been sentenced to prison for this homicide – including one
who was sentenced to 40 years in prison – and a fifth defendant is awaiting
sentencing," said Stephen J. Taylor, Director of the Division of Criminal Justice. 
"These successful prosecutions resulted from the skillful and devoted efforts of
members of the Division of Criminal Justice, Atlantic City Police Department and
Atlantic County Prosecutor's Office, who were determined to see justice done."
 
On Oct. 15, 2010, a co-defendant, Nasir Salaam, 22, of Galloway Township, was
sentenced to 40 years in state prison, including 30 years without possibility of
parole, by Judge DeLury.  Salaam pleaded guilty to felony murder in August 2010 as
he was about to go on trial for a second time. Salaam had already been convicted at
trial in May 2009 of charges related to the robbery, as well as conspiracy to
distribute cocaine, but the jury failed to reach a verdict on the felony murder
charge.
 
Salaam, Hudson and a third man, all teenagers at the time, committed the robbery
while armed with at least two handguns. They were assisted by two other teenagers
who drove them to the gas station. Salaam admitted that, during the robbery, he
brandished a handgun and demanded money from two attendants who were outside the
mini-mart.  Salaam admitted that, after hearing gunfire in the mini-mart, he fired a
shot at one of the attendants, Zepa, who tried to flee, wounding him, and fired two
shots at the mini-mart, where his two accomplices were robbing the owner at
gunpoint.
 
Another defendant, Basir Biggins, 22, of Atlantic City pleaded guilty on Dec. 22,
2008 to three counts of first-degree robbery.  He admitted that he provided one of
the handguns used in the robbery.  Biggins was sentenced on March 26, 2010 to 12
years in prison, including 10 years of parole ineligibility.
 
The two individuals who drove the robbers to the gas station, Gina McCrosson and
Tyler Hart, pleaded guilty in January 2009 to conspiracy to possess cocaine and
hindering apprehension, in exchange for recommended sentences of eight years in
prison.  Hart was sentenced on March 26, 2010 to eight years in prison.  McCrosson
is awaiting sentencing.

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