YONKERS, N.Y. - A Yonkers man has pleaded guilty to attempted murder for his role in a hit-and-run shooting incident that took place nearly two years ago.
On Friday, Edwin Palestina, 24, pleaded guilty to felony counts of first-degree manslaughter and attempted murder for his role in the shooting death of Rodney Saunders.
Shortly after 2 a.m. On May 1, 2014, Saunders - then 23-years-old, was walking on Woodsworth Avenue, in the vicinity of Gold Street in the city when two men hopped out of a minivan driving by and opened fire in what acting Westchester County District Attorney James McCarty described as “an ambush.”
The victim attempted to flee to his home, but was struck by six bullets, with the fatal shot striking his chest, traveling through his lungs and heart.
According to McCarty, “a witness looking out of his window was also fired upon, with the bullet hitting a window guard, grazing his left shoulder.” The shooters then ran to the minivan and fled.
Following an exhaustive investigation, Palestina was identified as one of the two shooters. He was arrested on June 16 last year in Houston, Texas. He was then remanded to Westchester County Jail. He is due to be sentenced on Thursday, April 7, where he faces a maximum sentence of up to 25 years in state prison.