NYC SHOOTINGS: Suspect cuffed for killing a Queens mom with stray bullet

3034-20 Reckless Endangerment 43 Pct 09-29-20 PHOTO

Detectives arrested a 31-year-old man in connection with the shooting death of a 43-year-old Queens mother who fatally shot in the head by a stray bullet earlier this week, police announced Saturday.

Issam Elabbar, 31, of 41st Avenue faces murder charges in connection with the shooting death of Bertha Arriaga, 43, of 34th Avenue in Jackson Heights on Wednesday, Sept. 30.

The shooting sparked outrage in the community and spurred rewards of up to $10,000 for information leading to the arrest of the suspect.

Officers from the 115th Precinct say Arriaga was not the intended target, as he fired at another person and escaped on a motor scooter. A video was distributed by the police that allegedly showed Elabbar escaping on the motor scooter.

Arriaga’s son found her mortally wounded in her bedroom later that morning. 

Furious elected officials demanded an arrest after it was discovered that she was merely an innocent bystander. Only a day after, another innocent bystander was shot in the leg in ongoing gang warfare in the Bronx.

Detectives from the 115th Precinct Detective Squad arrested Elabbar on Friday on charges including murder, manslaughter, possession of a loaded firearm and petty larceny, possibly linked to the motor scooter.

One shot overnight

One man was reported shot in an otherwise quiet Friday night into Saturday morning citywide, police said.

Police say an unidentified man arrived at Lincoln Hospital at about 6 a.m. on Oct. 3, with a gunshot wound to his arm, appearing to be a flesh wound. The victim has been uncooperative at this time with police from the 40th Precinct and the time and place of the shooting was not known.

The quiet night comes a day after the NYPD announced a 127% spike in shootings during September 2020. That same month, police also reported an all-time record 607 gun arrests.

Police also credit community groups for their outreach in their neighborhoods and residents outrage over the continuing violence to contributing to the reduction in gun violence.

Police seek information

Meanwhile, detectives need the public’s help in finding a vehicle and assailant depicted in a video and photographs in connection with a shooting  that occurred in the Bronx on Tuesday.

Officers from the 43rd Precinct said that at approximately 4:11 p.m. on Sept. 29, an assailant fired several shots at a 47-year-old woman’s home at St. Lawrence Avenue and East 172nd Street in Parkchester, Bronx, but luckily, nobody was hit in the fusillade of bullets.

Investigators say the bullets shattered windows of he second floor of the home. The assailant fled in a black Mercedes Benz Sprinter van southbound on St. Lawrence Avenue.

The assailant is described as a dark-skinned male who wore a blue rag wrapped around the top of his head, a black and yellow face mask, a blue long sleeved shirt, blue pants and black sneakers.

Anyone with information in regard to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 888-57-PISTA (74782). You can also submit tips online at nypdcrimestoppers.com, or on Twitter @NYPDTips. All calls and messages are kept confidential.

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