2006-01-06 / Front Page

Subway Predator Gets 25 Years In Slay

By Brian Magoolaghan

Raymond Burney, 19, is expected to be sentenced to 25 years in prison.
Raymond Burney, 19, is expected to be sentenced to 25 years in prison. A Far Rockaway thug, who shot and killed a young father of two in a botched jewelry robbery on the Beach 36 Street subway platform, pleaded guilty this week and now faces 25 years in prison.

Raymond Burney, 19, pleaded guilty to first degree manslaughter and admitted that he shot Shamel Garrett, 21, once in the back with a .38 caliber revolver on the afternoon of November 28, 2003.

Garrett, who was living and working in Albany with plans of returning to his hometown of Bedford-Stuyvesant to attend school and marry his girlfriend, was in Far Rockaway to visit a friend over the Thanksgiving holiday. The young father of two children, Shamel Jr. and Jasmine, was headed back to Bed-Stuy on a Manhattan-bound A Train when Burney and his accomplice, Mark Ebanks, 19, of Far Rockaway, noticed his earrings and necklace and decided to mug him.

Apparently sensing that he was their mark, Garrett exited the train at Beach 36 Street, but Ebanks and Burney pursued him. Ebanks pulled a gun and ripped Garrett’s white gold chain from his neck. Burney pulled out his earrings and went through his coat pockets. Garrett resisted. Burney took the handgun and shot him as he tried to run to safety.

Two NYPD Transit Officers, Oscar Rivera and Robert Mallins, arrested Ebanks at the scene. Burney got away after putting up a wild struggle in which both officers were injured. He was arrested a day later.

“The crime is another example of mindless gun-related violence that takes innocent lives and recklessly endangers public safety,” said Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown in a statement released on Wednesday.

Garrett’s mother, Sandra, told The Wave this week that her son’s two children are doing well but declined to comment further at this time. “The children are fine,” she said softly, “I’m only going to speak at the sentencing.”

Queens Supreme Court Justice Robert C. Hanophy indicated that he will sentence Burney to 25 years in prison at his sentencing on January 18. Ebanks admitted that he acted in concert with Burney and pleaded guilty to first degree robbery. He is expected to receive a 20-year sentence this month.

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