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2 Charged in Murder After Botched Drug Robbery: NYPD

By Gustavo Solis | January 21, 2015 1:17pm | Updated on January 21, 2015 1:20pm
 The driver died at Harlem Hospital, police said. 
Amaury Paulino Killed
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HARLEM — Two men have been charged with killing a 23-year-old in a drug-deal-turned-robbery that triggered a car accident on Christmas Eve, police said.

Amaury Paulino died of a gunshot wound that caused him to flip his 2014 Honda Accord on St. Nicholas Avenue, near West 129th Street, according to prosecutors. Paulino was fleeing after being shot in the shoulder by John Duncan and Frank Bright, who had also robbed him of pills, cash and a ring about 4:30 p.m. on Dec. 24, police said.

The suspects met Paulino earlier in front of a barbershop on West 144th Street and Broadway to set up a drug deal, exchanged numbers and planned to meet later for the transaction, according to the NYPD.

About an hour later, Paulino met the two men at 129th Street and St. Nicholas Avenue, police said. They asked him to go into a building, but he felt uneasy and suggested they do the transaction in his 2014 Honda Accord instead, police said.

Duncan and Bright, both 28, sat in the back seat. After Paulino handed them a bag of pills, Bright pulled out a gun and said, "Give me everything," according to the criminal complaint.

Amaury handed over cash and a gold ring before being shot in the right shoulder, police said. Both suspects got out of the car and fled.

The victim tried to drive away, but lost control of his car, crashing into a parked car and flipping his vehicle, police said. 

Police originally thought it was an accident but declared it a homicide a few days later.

Duncan and Bright have been arrested and charged with murder and robbery, according to police.

Duncan, who has five prior arrests including manslaughter and robbery, was caught on Jan. 13, police said. Bright, who has two prior arrests including assault and possession of a loaded gun, was arrested early Wednesday morning, according to the NYPD.

Duncan is due in court Feb. 6, while Bright is due in court June 26, police said.