2009-11-13 / Top Stories

Stabber Pleads Guilty To Killing Rival

By Howard Schwach

A Far Rockaway man who wanted to "teach a lesson" to a Jamaica, Queens man to stay away from his girlfriend has pleaded guilty to fatally stabbing the man in the heart in June 2008.

Queens District Attorney Richard Brown identified the defendant as Angel Santiago, 23, of 159 Beach 24 Street in Far Rockaway.

Santiago stunned the court on Tues - day when he interrupted jury selection to plead guilty to second-degree murder.

Brown said, "The defendant, motivated by jealously, lured the victim out of his house under the pretense of meeting the defendant's girlfriend - a woman he had befriended on a bus - and offered to help get a job. Unbe - knownst to the victim, the defendant had orchestrated the meeting with his girlfriend as a set-up and was laying in wait nearby to attack the victim to teach him a lesson to stay away from his girlfriend. The crime of which he has now been convicted was senseless and warrants imposition of a lengthy prison sentence."

Brown added that, in pleading guilty, Santiago admitted that he had fatally stabbed Guillermo Rojas once in the heart on the night of June 23, 2008. After being stabbed, Rojas ran back to his home nearby where he collapsed and was found by his sister. Shortly thereafter, the deceased's phone rang and when the sister answe red it, she heard a female voice ask if Rojas was OK. The sister turned the phone over to detectives who traced the last call to the defendant.

Queens Supreme Court Justice Michael Aloise, who was to preside at trial, set sentencing for December 14, at which time the defendant faces up to 25 years to life in prison.

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