Teen pleads guilty for role in 2009 drive-by murder
Damante Burrell, 18, pleaded guilty to manslaughter today for the death of Fred Bing, gunned down while standing outside talking to some friends on May 13, 2009 in retaliation for another murder Bing had nothing to do with.
Burrell was sentenced to 15 to 25 years in prison, the Suffolk County District Attorney's office reports. Abiona Justice Sharpe, 21, is scheduled to start trial April 6 on s first-degree murder charge for Bing's death, the DA's office says.
According to prosecutors, Burrell, Sharpe and two other men got in a van seeking vengeance for the murder of their friend, Terrence Jacobs, in 2007, at the hands of four men who beat, kicked and stabbed him to death. Around 10:20 p.m., prosecutors say, Burrell and Sharpe fired multiple shots at a group of people standing on Wilcock Street.
According to the DA's office, "Burrell raised himself up through the front passenger window and fired several shots across the roof from a 9mm handgun."
The people on the street scattered. No one called 911 - police came to investigate when the city's ShotSpotter system was activated - and Bing wandered off, shot in the foot, thigh and torso. His body was found the next day in a nearby driveway, obscured from the street by a porch and vehicle.
At Burrell's sentencing, Bing's brother, James, expressed both compassion for Burrell and sorrow at the loss of his brother. According to statement from the DA's office, he told the court:
"I understand he's a young man. I hope he takes an opportunity to become a better man when he gets out. Complete your education. Take part in the programs. Show your family you’re worth fighting for.
"I miss my brother. I miss laughing with him in the morning time and joking with him in the evening ... My mother has suffered so much for the last two years."