Defendant Fired Multiple Shots; Officers Returned Fire, Wounding Him


          Bronx District Attorney Darcel D. Clark today announced that a Manhattan teen has been indicted on Attempted Murder and additional charges for shooting at an NYPD Sergeant and two NYPD Police Officers during a graffiti stop.


        District Attorney Clark said, “The defendant allegedly resisted arrest and fired at an NYPD Sergeant and two NYPD Officers. The cops were not injured but the 18-year-old defendant was shot when they returned fire. Fortunately, no one died that day. It is a stark reminder of how important it is to get guns off the streets, because even a seemingly unremarkable  encounter can lead to gunfire.”


           District Attorney Clark said the defendant, Messiah Nantwi, 18, of 2333 5th Avenue, Manhattan, was arraigned on March 8, 2021 on three counts of Attempted Murder in the first degree, three counts of Attempted Murder in the second degree, first-degree Criminal Use of a Firearm, second-degree Criminal Possession of a Weapon, Criminal Possession of a Firearm, three counts of Menacing a Police Officer, Obstructing Governmental Administration in the second degree, Resisting Arrest and Possession of Graffiti Instruments before Bronx Supreme Court Justice David Lewis. Bail was set at $500,000 cash/$500,000 insurance company bond/ $500,000 partially secured bond at 10 percent. The defendant is due back in court on April 15, 2021.


According to the investigation, at approximately 12:30 a.m. on February 21, 2021 at Elton Avenue and East 153rd Street, uniformed NYPD Officers attempted to stop Nantwi and another individual when they saw them with spray paint cans. While the other individual ran away, the defendant was apprehended. During the arrest, the defendant took out a .22- caliber pistol and fired three shots at NYPD Sergeant Darren Earl and NYPD Officers Malik Underwood and Erick Reyes. The three Officers returned 31 shots, striking Nantwi multiple times. The defendant is currently being treated at Lincoln Hospital. The cops were not injured.


          The case is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Johanna Lerner and Assistant District Attorney John Oxenreiter, both of the Public Integrity Bureau, under the supervision of Omer Wiczyk, Chief of the Public Integrity Bureau, and under the overall supervision of Tarek Rahman, Deputy Chief of the Investigations Division, and Wanda Perez-Maldonado, Chief of the Investigations Division. District Attorney Clark thanked Trial Preparation Assistant Annarese Marcano, of the Public Integrity Bureau, and NYPD Force Investigation Division Detective Kevin Lavin for their assistance in the investigation. 


An indictment is an accusatory instrument and not proof of a defendant’s guilt.


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