Assailants Arrested and Indicted in Murder of Williamsburg Landlord - The Jewish Voice
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Assailants Arrested and Indicted in Murder of Williamsburg Landlord

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Menachem Stark, alleged Slumlord, abducted was and murdered on Jan 2.
Menachem Stark, alleged Slumlord, abducted was and murdered on Jan 2.
A Crown Heights man was arrested on charges of second degree murder in the killing of Brooklyn landlord Menachem Stark. Kendal Felix, 26 confessed to the killing saying in a statement that he and an accomplice only meant to scare the alleged slumlord into paying a reported $20,000 debt.

The debt, claims the defendant was for some construction work that was done on behalf of Stark, which Stark was lax in paying. On Jan. 2, Stark was abducted by his Brooklyn office in Williamsburg. The accused forcibly pushed Stark into a gray minivan, which was caught on video recorders in the neighborhood, and proceeded to sit on his chest to hold him down. Apparently the force was too great and Stark died of chest compression asphyxiation.. The duo became panicked and went to pick up friends for help in disposing of the body.

Felix said that one of the helpers immediately jumped out of the van when they realized there was a dead body inside. According to Felix, the three then drove to Long Island where they doused the body with gasoline and set it a blaze in hopes of destroying any evidence.

Their grisly deed was discovered the next morning when charred remains were found in a gas station dumpster and later identified to be that of the missing Menachem Stark.

Cops were on the culprit’s trail almost immediately after the slaying, when they found the abandoned minivan which matched up to the one found on the surveillance video. Inside were traces of Stark’s blood. Further investigation by NYPD tied the minivan to a contractor who had done work for Stark. Detectives seized computers and cell phones from the suspect as well as work boots. The boots will be matched up to the distinctive shoes caught on the video police secured the night of the abduction.

Rabbi David Niederman of the United Jewish Organizations of Williamsburg said the community was relieved that the suspects were finally caught.

“The pace of the investigation has accelerated over the last 24 hours and hopefully will continue to accelerate over the next 24 hours to its conclusion,” NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton said during a brief appearance with Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson, who nodded in agreement. “It’s accelerating and it’s moving in a very quick direction.”

“Today is bittersweet,” Niederman said. “Bitter because Menachem is no longer with us and he is forever missed. Sweet that the law enforce community has made an arrest in this heinous crime.”

Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn) also praised the authorities. “I have followed this terrible and tragic case from the beginning and applaud the NYPD for their tenacity in pursuing the murder suspects,” said Hikind.

Details are still unfounded whether Felix and friends meant to scare Stark or rob him. They were under the impression that Stark carried large sums of cash, apparently unaware of the mounting debt that caused Stark’s initial list of potential suspects to be lengthy.

Police did confirm however that they don’t believe the intent initially was to kill Stark and that his death was possibly an accident.

The indictment for Kendal Felix is scheduled for Monday May 12th.

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