Edward Turner, le meurtrier de Pape Khaly Ndiaye, fils du ministre de l’Elevage, Aminata Mbengue Ndiaye, a été déclaré non coupable jeudi par le tribunal qui le jugeait et hume l’air de la liberté. L’information nous est parvenue.
Pour rappel, c’est le 23 mars 2013 que Pape Khaly Ndiaye a été abattu alors qu’il s’interposait entre des gens qui se battaient dans Ihop, le bar-restaurant qu’il gérait la nuit dans le New Jersey. Il a reçu une balle dans la tête avant de succomber lors de son évacuation vers une clinique de New Jersey.
La police qui a ouvert une enquête avait même mis la tête du meurtrier à prix avec une prime de 10 000 dollars pour aider à sa capture. Finalement, c’est un an après, soit le 28 mars 2014 qu’Edward Turner a été arrêté.
Man accused of killing IHOP manager found not guilty
NEWARK – A Newark man charged in the murder of an IHOP manager in 2013 was found not guilty Thursday.
Edward Turner was accused of fatally shooting Papa Khaly Ndiaye as he tried to break up a fight outside the Bergen Street restaurant in March of 2013.
Turner was arrested about one year later and charged with the crime.
He was acquitted of murder, attempted murder, witness tampering and weapons offenses.
“We are very disappointed with the outcome in this tragic case but we respect the decision of the jury,” says Katherine Carter, a spokeswoman for the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office.
Turner was expected to be released from jail Thursday, according to his attorney.
Newark man found not guilty in killing of IHOP manager
NEWARK — A Newark man was acquitted today on charges of killing an IHOP restaurant manager during a 2013 shooting at the city eatery.
After beginning their deliberations on Wednesday afternoon, jurors this morning found Edward Turner, 28, not guilty of murder and related offenses in the March 23, 2013 fatal shooting of Papa Khaly Ndiaye. The shooting occurred at about 3 a.m. during a melee among customers at the Bergen Street restaurant.
Turner, who has been in custody at the Essex County jail since his arrest in March 2014, is expected to be released today, according to his attorney, Richie Roberts.
In an interview after the verdict was handed down, Roberts said he was “tremendously pleased with the verdict.”
“The quick verdict should be no reflection on the prosecutor or his office,” Roberts said. “A prosecutor is only good as the evidence he is given.”
In a statement, Katherine Carter, spokeswoman for the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, said: “We are very disappointed with the outcome in this tragic case but we respect the decision of the jury.”
In addition to the murder charge, Turner was acquitted of attempted murder, witness tampering and weapons offenses.
The trial was based in large part on the statements of a witness named Wendell Robinson, who identified Turner as the gunman.
In an interview with detectives in March 2014 and during his testimony at the trial, Robinson said he saw Turner with the gun immediately after the shooting. Turner was accused of firing the weapon from inside a coat pocket.
Essex County Assistant Prosecutor Eric Plant, who tried the case, argued Robinson was telling the truth. Plant also said Turner had threatened Robinson to not talk to the police or to lie to the police.
But Roberts claimed detectives coerced Robinson into identifying Turner as the shooter and threatened Robinson with the possibility of him going to jail in the murder case.
With the verdict, Roberts said jurors accepted that defense argument.
“I think, without question, they believed he was coerced and threatened into making a statement that Eddie did it,” Roberts said.
MORE: Cops forced witness to ID man as shooter in IHOP murder, attorney says
The shooting stemmed from the interaction of three groups at the IHOP restaurant, according to Plant.
Robinson, Turner and others were leaving the restaurant when their group got into a verbal dispute with a second group in the IHOP parking lot, Plant said. Turner’s group then left and the second group went inside, Plant said.
The second group then became involved in a dispute with a third group inside the restaurant, which involved an argument between two women who were dating, Plant said.
Plant argued that as the dispute became physical, Turner, Robinson and Turner’s brother returned to the restaurant and Robinson called on a man from the second group to come outside. Plant alleged that Turner then opened fire in the man’s direction, Plant said.
Ndiaye, 30, of Middlesex Borough – who had been trying to break up the fight and get people outside – was shot in the head, Plant said. He was pronounced deadseveral hours later at University Hospital.
A Senegalese immigrant from a prominent family in that West African country, Ndiaye had come to the United States to make a life for himself and was happy to have become a manager at the restaurant, Plant said.
Among the arguments raised during the trial, Roberts stressed how surveillance video footage shows the shooter wearing different clothing than what Turner was previously seen wearing. He disputed the state’s argument that Turner changed his clothes before the shooting.
But Plant noted how Turner’s girlfriend testified that Turner returned to his apartment after originally leaving the IHOP. Plant suggested Turner changed his clothes at that time.
Roberts claimed Turner was not present during the earlier dispute, and said prosecutors did not provide a reason for why Turner would commit the shooting.
But Plant said surveillance video footage indicates Turner was present for the earlier argument. That dispute provided a motive for the shooting when Turner saw the man from the second group who had argued with Turner’s group beforehand, according to Plant.
Bill Wichert may be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @BillWichertNJ. Find NJ.com on Facebook.