Friday, August 6, 2010

Teen Arrested in J Train Slay by Howard Koplowitz - Queens

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Woodhaven man defended brother before being killed at subway station...

Dario Paiva's mother, Norma, and girlfriend Elizabeth Firpo, who said she is five weeks pregnant, comfort one another at the Paiva home in Woodhaven hours after Dario was stabbed to death. Photo by Christina Santucci

Police arrested an Elmhurst teen Tuesday in connection with the murder of a family-oriented Woodhaven man who was killed trying to fend off a group of attackers who accosted his brother Friday night on the platform of the Forest Park J train station, police and his relatives said.

Benjamin Moreira, 19, of 40-45 Elbertson St. in Corona, was charged with murder and criminal possession of a weapon in the death of 27-year-old Dario Paiva, police said.

“These four guys were making noise and started a scene for no reason,” said Khrystian Paiva, 19, whose brother rushed to his aid and was fatally slashed.

He said one of the men told him his girlfriend broke up with him and a family member died and said he was “going to do something.”

Khrystian said the man pulled out a blade on the J train station at Jamaica Avenue and 85th Street when Dario went to help him.

Khrystian said his brother stumbled after being stabbed while the men rushed out of the station through the emergency exit.

He said one of the men flashed Latin King beads and said he recognized them from the neighborhood, but never spoke to them before.

He said police were late in getting to the scene because dispatchers sent authorities to the wrong address, but the 102nd Precinct could not be reached to confirm Khrystian’s account.

“The one night it actually counts, they didn’t do anything,” he said. “If the police would’ve done their job [Friday] night, you wouldn’t be here right now. You’d be interviewing the suspects, not me.”

The family held a vigil at the scene of the murder Saturday night.

Khrystian said when the family visited the memorial again Tuesday, it was gone.

City Sanitation Department spokesman Keith Mellis said he could not confirm if Sanitation removed the memorial.

Khrystian described his brother, whose girlfriend is five weeks pregnant, as family-oriented.

“He helped everyone out, even if it was 4 in the morning,” he said. “If somebody came and knocked on his door, he was always there to help. He always helped his family.”

Dario attended Kingsborough Community College in Brooklyn and was going to transfer to Queens College, where Khrystian went to school, so he could be closer to his brother.

“He’d want everybody to be happy right now,” Khrystian said. “He’d want everybody to be happy and safe.”

Norma Paiva, Dario’s mother, said the family was “devastated.”

“I can’t even express. This is so painful because we lost two brothers,” she said, referring to her son Dante, who died in a car accident four years ago. “There’s so much pain and so much emptiness. It’s a pain that I can’t describe. I just hope they catch these guys. What they did to my son is something they’ll have to pay [for].”