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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of New York

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Bronx Man Convicted After Trial Of Murder In Front Of Bronx Daycare Center

Joon H. Kim, the Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that a federal jury today found RUBEN PIZZARO guilty of murder, participating in a narcotics conspiracy, and firearms charges.

Acting U.S. Attorney Joon H. Kim said:  “As a unanimous jury found, Ruben Pizzaro shot and killed David Rivera in broad daylight in front of a daycare center in the Bronx.  The prosecution of this type of gang and drug violence helps make our communities safer, and we are committed to that.  I commend the FBI and the NYPD for their dogged work in this case and in all their work in keeping New York City safe.”          

According to the allegations contained in the Complaint and the Indictment and the evidence presented in court during the trial:

Between August 2015 and January 2016, PIZZARO was a member of a street gang that sold cocaine and crack cocaine in the vicinity of 180th Street and Arthur Avenue in the Bronx, New York.  PIZZARO and his crew of drug dealers were in competition with a neighboring drug crew on Hughes Avenue in the Bronx.  That competition played out in several violent shootings in late 2015.  For example, on at least three occasions in October and November 2015, PIZZARO and his drug crew committed at least three shootings at members of the Hughes Avenue drug crew.  Individuals were shot during two of those three incidents, and the third occurred in the immediate vicinity of a Bronx middle school. 

On November 24, 2015, in broad daylight at 9:15 in the morning, PIZZARO shot and killed rival drug dealer David Rivera in front of a daycare center in the vicinity of 175th Street and Crotona Avenue in the Bronx.

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PIZZARO, 25, of the Bronx, New York, was found guilty of one count of conspiring to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine, which carries a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison and a maximum sentence of 40 years in prison; one count of causing the death of another person through use of a firearm, which carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 25 years in prison and a maximum sentence of life in prison; and one count of using firearms, which were brandished and discharged, in furtherance of a narcotics conspiracy, which carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and a maximum sentence of life in prison. 

The maximum potential sentences in this case are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge.

Mr. Kim thanked the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the New York City Police Department for their work on the investigation.

The case is being prosecuted by the Office’s Violent and Organized Crime Unit.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Shawn Crowley, Max Nicholas, and Robert Allen are in charge of the prosecution. 

Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 
17-173
Updated June 13, 2017