2009-08-28 / Front Page

Bullets Sprayed At Ocean Village

By Howard Schwach

Amasked gunman sprayed bullets into an Ocean Village Chinese restaurant on Monday, hitting a Jamaica, Queens man multiple times in the head and the torso, killing him instantly, police sources and eyewitnesses say.

Police officers stand guard near the Ocean Village site where Ethan Watkins was shot on Monday afternoon. Police officers stand guard near the Ocean Village site where Ethan Watkins was shot on Monday afternoon. Police identified the dead man as Ethan Watkins, 32, who was shot in the head at about 1 p.m. inside the Delicious Food Takeout restaurant near Rockaway Beach Boulevard on August 24.

Eyewitnesses told The Wave that the shooter was wearing a ski mask when he walked into the restaurant and began spraying shots, adding that they believed that Watkins was the lone gunman's target.

"I heard eight or nine shots," one eyewitness, who asked not to be identified for fear of retribution, said. "People ran for their lives, some were crying, some were shouting."

A half hour after the shooting, some locals were blaming police for not stopping the shooting.

"You guys come here and arrest N____s for doing nothing and give tickets, but when a guy in a mask walks up here and starts shooting, you're nowhere to be found," one obviously distraught woman yelled at police.

Another young woman told a man standing nearby, "This ain't over. You go tell your friends that this ain't over yet."

One older man standing on the steps leading to the restau- rant said that he did not know the dead man, but, "The faces and the names change, but it's all the same, people shooting people for no good reason."

When police officers asked those at the scene for information, many turned their backs and walked away from the officers.

"Nobody ever sees nothing," one man mumbled to the police as he walked away.

A friend of the dead man, told New York One News that Watkins had a young son who lived at Ocean Village and that he recently moved back to New York from Virginia.

That friend, Sandra Trammell, told the television reporter, "I lived here. I moved out of here four years ago because it's very dangerous. You cannot sleep. The bullets are always flying through the windows. You cannot let your kids outside. It's very dangerous."

Sources say that Watkins' rap sheet indicates that he had been arrested at least six times, but would not disclose the crimes for which he was arrested.

Detectives from the 101 Squad are investigating, but police sources declined to speculate whether Watkins' death and that of Ronald Spivey, who was shot only three blocks away on Friday, August 21, are in any way related to each other.

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