default_mobilelogo

January 2020

In compliance with the Rules of Professional Conduct, Rule 3.6, you are advised that a charge is merely an accusation and that a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

Defendant: Jason Garcia (DOB 3/21/83) aka "Mecca-J"

Jan. 31, 2020 -- Westchester County District Attorney Anthony A. Scarpino, Jr. announced the leader of the G-Shine Bloods gang, Jason Garcia of Mount Vernon, was found guilty on all counts following a jury trial before Westchester County Court Judge Anne Minihan for the Mount Vernon Garden Bar shooting in 2016.

Specifically, he was found guilty of the following:

  • Attempted Murder in the Second Degree, a class B Felony
  • Two counts of Assault in the First Degree, class B felonies
  • Two counts of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree, class C felonies

Sentencing is scheduled for March 17, 2020. He faces up to 40 years in state prison.

The case was prosecuted by the Investigations Division Gang, Firearms and Narcotics Bureau.

Background
According to the evidence presented at trial, on Dec. 10, 2016 at 1:44 a.m. outside of the Garden Bar, 766 South 5th Avenue, Mount Vernon, Jason Garcia a/k/a "Mecca-J" ordered Matthew Brown, a Bloods gang associate, to shoot an individual who owed Garcia money for marijuana. Garcia is the highest-ranking member of the Westchester set of the Bloods Gang.

The target was shot in the chest and neck, and an innocent bystander was shot in the head. Both survived, but face life-long medical difficulties as a result of the shooting. The shooting was captured on surveillance video.

Garcia also faces trial for attempted murder and conspiring to kill an eyewitness to the bar shooting while being held in County jail pending this trial. For that, he and three co-defendants are charged with Attempted Murder in the First Degree, a class A violent felony, and others charges. That case is pending.(Read more on that case.)

Investigations into these cases are a collaboration by the Mount Vernon Police Department and the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office Criminal Investigators.

“This is a major blow to gang activity in Mount Vernon and Westchester as a whole,” said DA Scarpino. “Our focus on the most violent criminals in our communities continues to force down the crime rate and incidents of violence. Mount Vernon is a safer city as a result of this conviction. We commend our Criminal Investigators, prosecutors in the Gangs, Firearms and Narcotics Bureau and Mount Vernon Police for bringing this dangerous criminal to justice.”

 In compliance with the Rules of Professional Conduct, Rule 3.6, you are advised that a charge is merely an accusation and that a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

 _______________

Media contact:
media@westchesterda.net

(914) 995-3586

Jan. 31, 2020 -- Westchester County District Attorney Anthony A. Scarpino, Jr. and the NYS Department of Labor Fraud Investigations Division announced the Westchester DA’s Office is among the top five in the state for returning illegally gained unemployment insurance payments to the state. In 2019 alone, the DA’s Investigations Division Economic Crimes Bureau returned $243,857 in restitution from unemployment insurance fraud criminal prosecutions. Assistant District Attorney Nicole Gamble, of the Investigations Division prosecuted these cases.

These are the total amounts returned for the last three years, since DA Scarpino took office.

  • 2017: $317,842
  • 2018: $209,439
  • 2019: $243,857

In 2019, of the 62 District Attorney’s Offices in New York State, the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office ranked No. 5 in the state in returning Unemployment Insurance Fraud Restitution to the Department of Labor.

The New York State Department of Labor operates one of the largest Unemployment Insurance systems in the country. A part of that responsibility is to prevent and stop fraud to protect the integrity of the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund. It’s important to prevent fraudulent claims that result erroneous payments because may lead to increased costs for businesses and consumers.

DA Scarpino said, “Our Economic Crimes Bureau actively pursues those who would steal money from the people of New York State by falsely claiming unemployment benefits. They work closely with the Fraud Investigations team at the Department of Labor to stop criminals from taking illicit benefits and to garner restitution for the state. We are very proud of their work and will continue to support efforts to keep scammers from collecting money not owed to them.”

“I thank our investigators and the Westchester County DA’s office for their commitment to fighting unemployment insurance fraud,” said New York State Department of Labor Commissioner Roberta Reardon. “We have no tolerance for those who defraud the system, and this should serve as a reminder that those who break the law will be held accountable. Our efforts to preserve the integrity of the system are stronger when we work together. The $40 million in restitution achieved through statewide prosecutions over the past several years is prime evidence of that.”

 _______________

Media contact:
media@westchesterda.net

(914) 995-3586

Defendant: James Ready (DOB 06/25/92)

Jan. 28, 2020 -- Westchester County District Attorney Anthony A. Scarpino, Jr. announced James Ready of Putnam Valley was arraigned following an indictment by a Westchester County Grand Jury for assaulting a defendant in his custody and other charges. At the time, Ready was a probationary officer with the Mount Vernon Police Department. He is no longer with the department.

The indictment was unsealed by Westchester County Court Judge Susan Cacace. Ready was arraigned on the following charges:

  • Two counts of Assault in the Second Degree, a class D violent felony
  • Two counts of Falsifying Business Records in the First Degree, a class E felony

Ready surrendered to the court this morning for arraignment. Bail was set at $25,000 cash/bond.

Background 
Prosecutors allege, on Nov. 23, 2019, probationary Mount Vernon Police Officer James Ready was in charge of a person who was in police custody and had been taken to Montefiore-Mount Vernon Hospital emergency room to seek medical attention. Around 1:30 a.m., Ready was attempting to return him to MVPD headquarters.

At the time, the man in custody was handcuffed and shackled at the ankles. Ready picked him up, flipped him over, and threw him to the floor head first, causing serious injury. The incident was captured on hospital surveillance video.

Ready is also charged with falsifying official records by recording a false narrative of the incident.

DA Scarpino said, “Today we unsealed an indictment against a police officer for an on-duty felony assault of a prisoner and for lying about the incident. Not only did James Ready seriously injure his victim, he breached the public trust. We will hold this defendant accountable as we would anyone else facing such serious criminal charges. These charges do not reflect on any other Mount Vernon Police Officers who continue to serve their community.”

Deputy District Attorney Timothy Ward, of the Superior Court Trial Division, and Assistant District Attorney, Jennifer Sculco, Acting Deputy Chief of the Investigations Division Public Integrity Bureau, are prosecuting the case.

 In compliance with the Rules of Professional Conduct, Rule 3.6, you are advised that a charge is merely an accusation and that a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

 _______________

Media contact:
media@westchesterda.net

(914) 995-3586

Defendant: Henry Nieves (01/01/68)

Jan.29, 2020 -- Westchester County District Attorney Anthony A. Scarpino, Jr. announced Henry Nieves of New Rochelle was sentenced Monday (1/27) for attempted robbery of a Yonkers bank last year. Westchester County Court Judge Michael Martinelli presided.

Nieves pleaded guilty to Attempted Robbery in the First Degree, a class C felony, Dec. 16, 2019, and will spend 3.5 years in state prison with five years’ post-release supervision for the crime.

Background
On Aug. 22, 2019, at 12:43 p.m., Henry Nieves walked into the Wells Fargo Bank branch on South Broadway, Yonkers armed with a kitchen knife. He displayed the weapon to a bank employee and demanded money. He took more than $2,700 dollars from the teller and fled the bank.

An investigation was conducted by Yonkers Police who arrested Nieves a few days later after being spotted by an employee entering and exiting the same location.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Matthew McCarty of the Superior Court Trial Division.

 In compliance with the Rules of Professional Conduct, Rule 3.6, you are advised that a charge is merely an accusation and that a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

 _______________

Media contact:
media@westchesterda.net

(914) 995-3586

 

Defendant: James Bachman (DOB 04/17/50)

Jan. 27, 2020 -- Westchester County District Attorney Anthony A. Scarpino, Jr. announced James Bachman of New Rochelle was arraigned Friday (1/24) in New Rochelle City Court on drug and weapons charges.
He was arrested by New Rochelle Police and charged with the following:

  • 2 counts of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Third Degree, a class B felony
  • 6 counts of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree, a class C violent felony

Bachman was remanded to Westchester County Jail.

Background
New Rochelle Police arrested James Bachman on Jan. 24, 2020, after an investigation into sales of narcotics in the area. On a warrant served for a New Rochelle location, the felony complaint alleges, police found cocaine and the materials to produce it. In addition, they seized five firearms including three revolvers and two semi-automatic pistols. Ammunition for all of the weapons was also recovered.

Bachman appeared in court on Jan. 27, 2020, for a conference and his next court date is scheduled for Feb. 5, 2020.

The Investigations Division Gang, Firearms and Narcotics Bureau is prosecuting the case.

 In compliance with the Rules of Professional Conduct, Rule 3.6, you are advised that a charge is merely an accusation and that a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

 _______________

Media contact:
media@westchesterda.net

(914) 995-3586