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Relative Charged With Murder in Cousin’s Drive-By Shooting Death at Long Island Home



A deadly drive-by shooting on Long Island took a shocking and heartbreaking twist, after a teenager was gunned down — and his cousin getting charged in his murder.

Nassau police have not answered many questions about the June drive-by shooting in Hempstead, but emotions erupted outside a courtroom on Wednesday, as two families already linked by bloodlines now share in a tragedy.

“It’s a sad situation today because Jaden is my great-nephew, but Laron is my nephew,” said Felisa Watts, saying there are no winners in the sad ordeal.

Her nephew, 22-year-old Laron Watts, was charged with murder in the death of his second-cousin, 19-year-old Jaden Johnson.

“Yes, they knew each other. They knew Jaden, and Jaden knew them” said the victim’s mother, LaToya Johnson. She said that her son was waiting for a car on a Hempstead street when he was killed in a drive-by shooting.


The case’s criminal complaint indicates two gunmen fired at least ten shots, with Watts serving as the car’s driver.

A family member insisted that Watts is not guilty — a sentiment echoed by his attorney, who said that Watts “did not possess a gun and was not involved in shooting anyone.”

Johnson’s mom doesn’t believe her son was the target of the gunmen. She said police are now looking for three others in connection with the shooting.

“This is crazy. I lost my first son. I can’t believe this. His life was short for no reason, no reason at all,” Latoya Johnson said. “I just want them to bring themselves in. Turn yourself in. You know what you all did and it was wrong. Turn yourself in. Justice for my son.”

Nassau County police declined to comment on Wednesday. Investigators have yet to say what motivated the shooting, and whether or not Johnson was the intended target.

Source: NBC New York


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