Teen Indicted In Shooting Of Diplomat’s Wife
By LIZ GOFF
A Jamaica teenager last week was indicted on attempted murder charges for allegedly shooting the wife of a Sudanese diplomat in Astoria on April 20.
Miguel Mata, 19, of 90th Avenue, was allegedly firing at some other teens near Long Island City High School on Broadway and 14th Street at about 7:25 p.m. on April 20, when one round struck Mawahib Elbahi, 31, in the shoulder as she stood in front of her apartment on 21st Street and 31st Drive, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said.
Police said the round barely missed Elbahi’s 3-year-old daughter and the infant son she was holding in her arms. Elbahi, 31, “came within an inch of her life” when the stray bullet tore through her shoulder and neck, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said.
Elbahi, wife of Sudanese Consul General Mohamed Elbahi, was struck while she waited for her 5-year-old son to be dropped off from school, Kelly said.
Police sources said the stray bullet traveled about three blocks from the site of a dispute outside Long Island City High School. Students from the school on Broadway and 14th Street were arguing when Mata allegedly pulled a knife and the gun and began shooting, the sources said. Cops said Mara is not a student at Long Island City High School.
Mata was arraigned on August 9 in front of Queens Supreme Court Judge Fernando Camacha on charges including second-degree attempted murder, assault, criminal possession of a weapon, reckless endangerment and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child, Brown said.
Elbahi was taken to Elmhurst Hospital Center for treatment of her shoulder wound. She remained hospitalized for several days, authorities said.
Brown described the shooting as a “glaring example of aimless gun-related violence.”
“This was a shocking incident in which a woman with an infant in her arms and a toddler by her side was almost killed outside her home,” Brown said.
“Fortunately, she survived her terrifying ordeal.”
Detectives at the 114th Precinct hit the street immediately after the shooting and were able to track Mata’s whereabouts and arrest him hours later.
Mata has been held in lieu of $100,000 bail since his arrest and is due back in court on September 17, Brown said.
State Sen. Michael Gianaris, whose district covers the scene of the shooting, recently introduced legislation that would strengthen gun control laws in New York State – a measure described by law enforcement as “the toughest gun control laws ever proposed in the state.”
Mata could face up to 25 years in prison, if convicted.