Police/FireThe Northern Westchester Examiner

Two Mohegan Residents Face Federal Charges in Separate Cases

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Two Mohegan Lake residents have been charged in separate cases by the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York.

U.S. Attorney Damien Williams announced last week that Gina Mestre, 33, a former New York City police officer, pleaded guilty in connection with her involvement in obstructing a federal investigation into the Shooting Boys gang and serving as an accessory to a murder committed by the gang’s leader.

Mestre could face a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison after pleading guilty to one count of accessory after the fact to murder in aid of racketeering.

“As she has now admitted, Gina Mestre, a former NYPD Officer, abused her position of public trust and betrayed the oath she took to protect and serve the citizens of New York City by helping a gang member evade capture for a murder of a rival gang member that he committed in broad daylight,” Williams said in a statement.

“When law enforcement officers break the laws they are sworn to uphold, they do a disservice to their fellow officers, to the departments that employ them and to the public they serve.”

As alleged in the indictment, Mestre, a police officer from July 2013 to May 2022, was assigned to the 52nd Precinct’s Public Safety Unit. In the summer of 2020, a major focus of the precinct and the Public Safety Unit was the reduction of gun violence, much of which was committed by members of the Shooting Boys gang.

The Shooting Boys gang is a criminal organization based in the University Heights section of the Bronx. The gang’s territory and base of operations fell within the jurisdiction of the NYPD’s 52nd Precinct. The leader of the Shooting Boys was Andrew Done, a/k/a “Caballo.”

In June 2020, Mestre began communicating with Done through secret social media accounts and phone numbers. According to Williams, Mestra and Done began an intimate relationship, during which Mestre provided Done and other gang members with confidential, non-public law enforcement information about the federal grand jury investigation into the Shooting Boys.

Mestre also warned Done about impending law enforcement operations, enabling Done and other gang members to conceal their criminal activity.

In addition, Mestre disclosed the identity of a witness cooperating with law enforcement and providing information about the gang, which allowed Done and other Shooting Boys to assault and intimidate the witness in an effort to prevent the witness from cooperating.

On Nov. 5, 2020, Done shot and killed a rival gang member as he sat in his car in the Bronx. During the manhunt to apprehend Done, Mestre covertly advised Done that authorities were looking for him and sent Done a copy of the video that showed him committing the murder.

Following the murder, Mestre continued to secretly communicate with Done and warn him about law enforcement’s efforts to capture him, which helped him avoid apprehension and eventually flee the United States, according to authorities.

In March 2022, 10 members of the Shooting Boys were charged in a 15-count indictment with various federal crimes, including racketeering conspiracy and murder. Done was charged with murder and was apprehended in the Dominican Republic several months later.

On Feb. 22, 2023, Done was sentenced to 35 years in prison.

Meanwhile, another Mohegan Lake resident was charged last week with distributing fentanyl that resulted in the death of a victim.

Perry Freeman, 37, could face a maximum sentence of life in prison if convicted of the charge. He was also charged with one count of illegally possessing ammunition as a convicted felon.

According to the indictment, on Nov. 10, 2021, Freeman sold fentanyl to a victim. Shortly afterward, Yorktown police responded to a report of a burning car in a Mohegan Lake parking lot, about a three-minute drive from Freeman’s apartment building. Police found a Ford Focus on fire with the victim in the driver’s seat with his foot on the accelerator pedal.

After the fire was extinguished by firefighters, the victim, who was declared dead, was pulled out of the wreckage. Investigators determined that the car caught fire from overheating when the accelerator was depressed for an excessive period of time while in park. The victim had passed out in the driver’s seat with his foot on the pedal.

Williams stated that Freman sold fentanyl to the victim, who had passed out shortly from ingesting lethal levels of the drug.

“The engine sparked a fire that engulfed the vehicle and burned the victim’s body,” Williams said.

Freeman regularly sold fentanyl to a confidential informant and warned the informant to be careful with the drugs, indicating he knew how unsafe his product was, the U.S. Attorney’s office stated.


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