QUEENS — A 34-year-old man charged with the murder of a 21-year-old camp counselor earlier this month in St. Albans was ordered held without bail, the Queens District Attorney’s office said Monday.
Jonel Lattore, 34, was arraigned Saturday on murder, criminal possession of a weapon and reckless endangerment charges after he shot and killed Teriana Holcombe, 21, on the corner of Murdock Ave. and 198th St. on Aug. 15 just before 9:30 p.m., officials said.
Holcombe, who for the past four years worked for Young People's Day Camp of Queens, was described by her coworkers as “a bright, thoughtful and caring young woman loved by the campers, parents and staff fortunate enough to have met her.”
“The senseless killing of this young woman is another example of why we must remain vigilant in the fight against illegal firearms," Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said in a statement. "The victim in this case was just 21 years old and could have lived a long, fulfilling life if not for this needless gun violence.”
Police said the shooting was sparked by an ongoing dispute involving her friends and another group that have been fighting for years.
It was unclear what the feud was about, authorities said Monday.
On Aug. 15, two of Holcombe's friends got into a fight with members of the other group outside a St. Albans bodega, sources said.
Her friends left, but later returned with Holcombe, her boyfriend and others to resume the argument, when Lattore, who belonged to the other group, pulled out a gun and fired several rounds at Holcombe and other people she was with, striking Holcombe in the head, according to police and Lattore's criminal complaint.
Authorities said that Lattore, who lives around the corner from where the shooting took place, had turned himself in to police Friday.
He has 16 prior arrests, dating back to 1999, some of them sealed. He was arrested several times for selling marijuana, police said.
His attorney declined to comment on the case Monday.
If convicted, Lattore faces up to 25 years to life in prison. He is due back in court on Sept. 8, the Queens DA's office said.