The ex-con accused of pushing a Bronx man to his death was held without bail Wednesday evening, his second arraignment this month, authorities said.
Kevin Darden, 34, was charged with second degree murder in the death of 61-year-old Wai Kuen Kwok, who was shoved from the East 167th Street station in the Bronx on Sunday morning, police said.
Darden was held without bail Wednesday evening at his arraignment inside Bronx Criminal Court. Showing little emotion, Darden stared straight ahead during the 10-minute proceeding.
“We would like to take this moment just to remind everyone that Kevin Darden is a human being,” his attorney Edward McGowan said. “He’s not a monster and like any human being he was charged with a crime, in this country he’s entitled to the presumption of innocence and to a vigorous defense, which I can guarantee he’s going to receive.”
Darden did not enter a plea and was not required to do so. His next court appearance is scheduled for Nov. 24.
Darden, who has an extensive criminal history with more than 30 prior arrests and several incarcerations, was released from jail on a technicality just two days before Kwok was killed on a technicality, a law enforcement official with knowledge of the case said yesterday.
Darden had been arrested one week before when he allegedly put his hand near a tourist’s jacket pocket in Times Square just before 3:30 a.m. on Nov. 9, according to the criminal complaint.
In that incident, Darden was charged with misdemeanor jostling and held in lieu of $1,000 cash bail — far less than the $4,000 the district attorney’s office had requested, a spokeswoman from the Manhattan DA’s office said.
The DA’s office had a signed complaint but needed a supporting deposition from the victim. The woman, however, had returned to her country before they could secure one and the judge had no choice but to let Darden go on his own recognizance on Nov. 14, the law enforcement official said.
Darden was charged with pushing Kwok into the path of a Southbound D train, while his wife stood by watching, two days later at about 8:45 a.m., police said.
The Manhattan case remains open and Darden has to return to court on that charge on Jan. 14, the spokeswoman said.
Investigators were also looking into whether Darden shoved another 51-year-old man to the ground inside the West 4th Station in the West Village.
The man in that incident, who was not identified, was attacked at about 5:30 p.m. on Nov. 6. He suffered injuries to his back and hand and was treated and released at NYU Langone Medical Center, police said.