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25 year-sentence in '09 Wyandanch slaying

A Wyandanch man was sentenced Wednesday in Suffolk County Court to 25 years in prison for the 2009 shooting death of a 47-year-old grandfather.

Prosecutors said Jeremiah Armstrong, also of Wyandanch, was killed when Michael McKenzie and another man shot 20 rounds into a crowd of 10 people outside a home on Irving Avenue in Wyandanch on June 1, 2009.

McKenzie, 22, pleaded guilty last year to first-degree manslaughter in connection with Armstrong's death. He received the maximum sentence Wednesday from State Supreme Court Justice Robert W. Doyle.

Armstrong's friends and family, including his wife, Patricia, and sister, Desiree, quietly said "Yes!" as Doyle announced the sentence.

"You have the hands of a murderer," Desiree Armstrong, of Wyandanch, said in court to McKenzie before he was sentenced. "You need to stop the violence, young man."

The second gunman, Rudolph Bisnauth, 25, of Wheatley Heights, was convicted Friday of second-degree murder in connection with Armstrong's death. He faces a maximum sentence of 25 years to life in prison. Bisnauth's sentencing is scheduled for March 3.

Prosecutors said it was unclear whether McKenzie or Bisnauth fired the fatal shot because the men had taken turns firing the same weapon, a 9-mm semiautomatic pistol.

The shooting stemmed from a dispute between an acquaintance of Bisnauth and McKenzie and several other people, Assistant District Attorney Robert Biancavilla said. Jeremiah Armstrong was not involved in the dispute, he said.

Patricia Armstrong said her husband, the manager of a tile and flooring company, had three children, two stepchildren and 10 grandchildren. They had been married for 14 years. He enjoyed fishing for porgies off Huntington, she said."I miss everything about my husband. He was a sweet man," she said outside court after the sentencing. "He's very much missed and very much loved."

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