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Tempers flare at fatal shooting suspect's arraignment

Diquan McClough, held without bail on a charge

Diquan McClough, held without bail on a charge of second-degree murder, is brought out of Nassau Police headquarters to be arraigned. (Jan 12, 2013) Credit: Howard Schnapp

Two mothers -- one whose son was gunned down last month in Hempstead, the other whose son was arrested Friday 800 miles away as the accused killer -- faced off in court Saturday.

The families scowled at one another before and during the suspect's arraignment. Afterward, their fury spilled out onto the street, with shouts from both sides.

Diquan McClough, 20, is charged with second-degree murder in the Dec. 8 shooting death of Quaivis Ford, also 20.

At Saturday's hearing, Judge Anna Anzalone denied McClough bail and ordered him jailed.

"He's a coward as far as I'm concerned. I want to see the man that killed my son," said Ford's mother, Sharon Carmichael, 42, of Hempstead.

Ford, of Hempstead, was shot with a 9-mm semiautomatic pistol outside Carmichael's housing project at 100 Terrace Ave., authorities said.

Prosecutor Richard Corrao told the judge that McClough fired six shots, three of which struck Ford.

McClough, also of Hempstead, was arrested in Augusta, Ga., where he had fled after the shooting, Nassau police said. Authorities did not disclose a motive for the shooting, or whether the men knew each other.

Joining Carmichael in the courtroom Saturday were dozens of friends and family, many of whom wore customized memorial sweatshirts and pins with pictures of Ford and his nickname: "Quaboo."

As McClough stood handcuffed nearby, one of Ford's mourners called out, "The defendant should die!"

Court-appointed defense attorney Jenna Suppon said McClough is a Nassau native who lives with his mother and is unemployed after previously working at Target.

Carmichael said Ford's daughter was born about two weeks after the shooting, on Christmas Eve. He had worked as an office assistant in Queens.

Police said McClough, who is also facing unrelated drug dealing charges, was captured without incident in Georgia with the help of U.S. marshals.

As McClough's mother left court, a gray, hooded sweatshirt pulled over her face, Ford's mourners shouted expletives at her. She declined to comment.

A family friend of McClough's, hospital worker Cornell Brown, 35, afterward described the tension in the courtroom.

"There was a lot of anger," he said. "I hope they got the wrong guy, to be honest, because this doesn't even sound like him to do anything like it."

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