MS-13 gang members lured a 19-year-old into a Freeport park last month before shooting him once in the head, a prosecutor said Wednesday at the arraignment of a Suffolk man facing murder and conspiracy charges.
An attorney for Tulio Ayala, 41, of Central Islip, entered a not guilty plea for him in a virtual court proceeding that followed his arrest Tuesday on second-degree murder and first-degree conspiracy charges.
Police previously identified the homicide victim as Daniel Garcia-Carbajal of Freeport, saying he was found dead of an apparent gunshot wound at 5:30 p.m. on March 4 in the village’s Cow Meadow Park.
Jared Rosenblatt, Homicide Bureau chief of the Nassau district attorney’s office, said during the arraignment that Ayala and other MS-13 members lured Garcia-Carbajal to the park on March 1 before "the victim was shot once in the head, killing him."
He didn't say if Ayala was believed to be the gunman.
The prosecutor did say Ayala lured the victim with at least one other person who was younger than 16. He asked Nassau District Court Judge David Wright to remand Ayala to jail without bail, a request the judge granted while citing the "seriousness of the allegations."
The felony complaint charging Ayala with conspiracy alleges he conspired to commit murder "while acting in concert with one person previously arrested and several others not yet arrested, one of which is under the age of sixteen and did in fact intentionally cause the death of the victim, Daniel Garcia-Carbajal by shooting him in the head."
A Nassau district attorney's office spokesman declined to comment on the case later Wednesday.
Mineola defense attorney Christopher Devane, who represented Ayala for the arraignment and later declined to comment, asked the judge to consider a $100,000 bail. He said Ayala is a married father of four.
Ayala said during a screening to see if he qualified for free legal representation that he currently is unemployed but owns a home worth about $300,000 that is mortgage-free. The defendant also said he had no savings but his wife collects unemployment.
The judge told Ayala he would have to hire a private attorney. The defendant's next court date is later this week.