MANHATTAN CRIMINAL COURT — Authorities formally charged Manuel Pinero, 41, for the murder of 23-year-old Morningside Heights father, Christopher Adames.
The Manhattan District Attorney's office indicted Pinero of second-degree murder Tuesday. While Pinero did not appear at the hearing, dozens of Adames' family members showed up wearing T-shirts or badges remembering the man they affectionately referred to as 'Kiko.'
Authorities have accused Pinero of stabbing Adames after allegedly getting into an altercation with him outside the Juliet Supperclub on West 21st Street after a night of partying.
Sources said Adames started speaking with several women outside the club when he was stabbed from behind numerous times early in the morning on Sept. 26, 2011.
Pinero then allegedly fled in a black Audi and was on the lam until he turned himself in Wednesday.
Numerous sources identified Pinero as a club promoter well-known in the city's nightlife scene under the name 'Manny Stax.'
Neither Pinero nor his lawyer could be seen in the courtroom for Tuesday's indictment. Prosecutors said last week that Pinero could be considered a flight risk because he has access to financial resources, evidenced by a $1.3 million home in New Jersey and at least two luxury cars.
Adames' family would not comment on the case, but several family members left the courtroom in tears after the one-sentence indictment was delivered.
"Kiko was a very genuinely good person," said a woman who identified herself as Maria, Adames' godmother. "It's important for us to be here — this is for Kiko."