Man Found Guilty of Killing WaHi Karaoke Club Bouncer Arsene Epouta

By Shayna Jacobs on January 26, 2012 8:01pm 

Arsene Epouta was murdered in front of La Casa Del Mofongo in October 2009.
Arsene Epouta was murdered in front of La Casa Del Mofongo in October 2009.
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Manhattan District Attorney's Office

MANHATTAN SUPREME COURT — A Bronx man has been found guilty of killing a karaoke club bouncer who had tried to toss him out of the Washington Heights bar, prosecutors said Thursday. 

Jonathan Gonzales-Alvarez, 23, fatally stabbed La Casa Del Mofongo employee Arsene Epouta, 40, on Oct. 27, 2009, when staffers said Gonzales-Alvarez lashed out after taking offense to men dancing on stage in front of him at the St. Nicholas Avenue karaoke joint.

Epouta ordered Gonzales-Alvarez to leave, but the hot-headed patron threw a punch instead and then plunged a knife into the bouncer's back, abdomen and heart, killing him.

“A father of two young boys lost his life merely because he asked the defendant to quiet down at a bar," Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. said in a statement, following his conviction on second-degree murder and gang assault charges.

Gonzales-Alvarez's trial opened two weeks ago in Manhattan Supreme Court. 

Luis Almanzar is also charged with manslaughter in connection to the case. Prosecutors say Almanzar held Epouta still while Gonzales-Alvarez attacked him.

Gonzales-Alvarez faces a maximum of 25 years to life in prison when he's sentenced Feb. 15.

Almanzar's case remains open.

The St. Nicholas Avenue block where Arsene Epouta was murdered in 2009.
The St. Nicholas Avenue block where Arsene Epouta was murdered in 2009.
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Manhattan District Attorney's Office

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