Today’s news:

Rockaway man gets 50 years in 2009 shooting death: DA

TimesLedger Newspapers

A Far Rockaway man who indiscriminately sprayed bullets into a crowd in the neighborhood in September 2009 was sentenced to a lengthy term in prison by the Queens district attorney.

District Attorney Richard Brown announced last week that Far Rockaway resident Paul Williams, 36, who was convicted of opening fire on a crowd, killing one man and seriously wounding another, will spend 50 years to life in prison for the crime.

Brown said the man’s obvious disregard for human life was a deciding factor in Queens Supreme Court Justice Gregory L. Lasak’s 50-year sentence.

“Taking into consideration the defendant’s wanton disregard for human life, the lengthy prison sentence imposed today by the court is more than justified in order to punish him for his actions and to protect society,” said Brown. “The sentence also sends a clear and unequivocal message that random gun violence is not tolerated in Queens County.”

Williams, who has been held without bail since his arrest in February 2010, was convicted in March 2012 of second-degree murder, second-degree attempted murder and first-degree assault, according to the Queens district attorney’s office.

According to Brown, Williams fired 29 rounds into a crowd of people with an assault rifle at the corner of Augustina Avenue and Nameoke Street in Far Rockaway Sept. 14, 2009, around 8 p.m. The victim, Ronald Washington, 28, of Far Rockaway, was fatally struck four times in the upper torso. Todd Jamison, 45, of Cedarhurst, L.I., was struck in the leg, resulting in the amputation of his leg above the knee, Brown said.

Williams fled the scene but was identified and arrested five months later in North Carolina after he was taken into custody on an unrelated incident.

Reach reporter Steve Mosco by e-mail at or by phone at 718-260-4546.

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