1999-06-26 / Front Page

Another Murder In 100th

Young Man Beaten To Death
By Joan Ward George



Nineteen year old William Smith was beaten and thrown to his death off the jetty near Beach 86 street and Jamaica Bay early Tuesday evening by two would be robbers hell bent on claiming Smith’s gold chain, medallion and bicycle as their own.


Although mistakenly reported in the daily papers that police were working on the theory that Smith slipped to his death on the rocky shoreline, a full scale homicide investigation was immediately undertaken after the victim’s dead body was discovered by a fisherman. Smith’s body was reportedly found lying face-down, partially clothed and partially in the water. He had an injury to the back of his head and was pronounced dead at the scene.

According to police authorities, the medical examiner has determined that Smith died as a result of blunt trauma to the head and subsequent drowning.

Arrested Wednesday and charged in connection with Smith’s death are Joseph Frye, 19, of 84-12 Beach Channel Drive and Alton Harding, 19, of 312 Beach 63 street. The charges against both of the suspects were pending as The Wave went to press Thursday.

Robbery has been determined to be the cause of the attack. Smith’s gold jewelry and bicycle were taken from the scene.

Smith is the second teenager in Rockaway to be killed in recent weeks because of robbers on the look out for gold jewelry.

After being touted as the safest precinct in the city just a few months ago, the 100 Precinct has been the scene four killings in recent weeks. In all four cases, the alleged perpetrators have been brought to justice.

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