Today’s news:

22 yrs. for Maspeth mugger

A Brooklyn man was sentenced to 22 years in prison Monday for shooting a Maspeth man during a mugging in October 2006 as his pregnant wife watched, the Queens district attorney said.

Ronald King, 18, of 1345 Hancock St. in Brooklyn, was convicted in April of attempted murder, assault, five counts of robbery and criminal possession of a weapon and sentenced earlier this week before Queens Supreme Court Justice Richard Buchter, who presided over the two-week jury trial, Queens DA Richard Brown said.

Buchter handed down a 22-year prison sentence with five years of post-release supervision, the DA said.

"The victim of this shooting is fortunate to be alive under the circumstances," Brown said. "The defendant senselessly fired two shots even though his victims had handed over their valuables."

The man, who was 16 at the time of the robbery, and two other accomplices approached Maspeth couple Edwin and Diana Pizarro around 10 p.m. on Oct. 20, 2006, on Bleeker Street near the border of Maspeth and Ridgewood, the DA said. Diana Pizarro was pregnant at the time of the incident, the DA said.

The trio demanded money and the couple handed over a watch, cash and debit cards, Brown said. One of King's accomplices yelled "Cock it" and the defendant pulled the trigger, the DA said. Edwin Pizarro struggled with King in an attempt to snatch the gun, but the defendant shot him in the head, Brown said.

The DA said a doctor testified at the trial that Edwin Pizarro could have been killed or paralyzed if the bullet, which lodged in his brain, had made a slightly different trajectory.

"He is lucky to have survived with damage to his left arm, some memory loss and trouble with his speech," Brown said.

Diana Pizarro picked King out of a series of photos and identified him in a police line-up one week after the shooting, Brown said. King's accomplices have not been apprehended, he said.

Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e-mail at or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 156.

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