A Manhattan man pleaded not guilty Thursday to an indictment charging him with running over a North Amityville man with his own car in a 7-Eleven parking lot last month.
Edwin Gutierrez, 48, is charged with second-degree murder in the death of Dionel Ramirez, 69, who was killed Nov. 28 while picking up day-old baked goods that he planned to give away to homeless people.
Ramirez's wife, Blanca, muttered as Assistant District Attorney Robert Biancavilla described her husband's death to state Supreme Court Justice William Condon.
Biancavilla said Gutierrez jumped into Ramirez's Hyundai Tuscon while Ramirez was in the convenience store in North Bay Shore. Ramirez ran out and stood in front of the car.
"Mr. Gutierrez essentially stood on the gas and ran Mr. Ramirez down," Biancavilla said.
The entire crime is on the store's surveillance video, Biancavilla said, noting that Gutierrez has a conviction for a carjacking 10 years ago.
Condon ordered Gutierrez held without bail.
Michelle Ramirez, the victim's daughter, said afterward that she was amazed Gutierrez would forcibly steal a car even after being convicted of it before.
"What makes you think that's OK, to do it again?" she said.
Defense attorney Michael Elbert said he was disturbed that Biancavilla continued to focus on the good deed Ramirez was doing at the time of his death. He said creating a sense of sympathy for Ramirez in the community could poison the pool of potential jurors down the road.
Elbert said there are "extenuating circumstances" for his client's behavior that day, but he declined to elaborate.