The 2009 vigorous trial defense of a 15 year old boy charged with intentional murder in Nassau County which resulted in a jury that was 'hopelessly deadlocked' which thereafter resulted in a favorable disposition.


Boy, 15, charged in Roosevelt murder  Cody Hernandez


A 15-year-old boy from Roosevelt -- a reputed member of the Crips street gang -- was arraigned Thursday on a murder charge in the death of a rival from the Bloods, according to court records and Nassau County police.

Cody Hernandez is accused of shooting Lord Carter with a .25-caliber handgun, striking him in the stomach and left thigh, according to a felony complaint.

At the arraignment hearing Thursday, a judge ordered Hernandez jailed without bail. He is charged as an adult with second-degree murder.

The police said a witness saw the two arguing June 21 at East Fulton Avenue and Scherer Place in Roosevelt just before Hernandez fired around 11:15 p.m., then ran away.

And the day before, the two had a dispute in Centennial Park in Roosevelt, said homicide Det. Sgt. Richard Laursen of the Nassau police.

"There was some personal animosity between the two," Laursen said. "Without a gun, it would have just been a dispute."

The murder weapon has not been recovered, Laursen said.

Just before his latest arrest, Hernandez had been in a juvenile jail for violation of probation stemming from a criminal case in family court, according to records. Citing the confidentiality of juvenile court records, a Nassau police spokesman refused to detail Hernandez's previous crime.

Hernandez pleaded not guilty at his arraignment at First District Court in Hempstead, said his attorney, Dominic L. Addabbo of Forest Hills. Addabbo said he would not comment on the merits of the case. Hernandez is due back in court next week. Addabbo said he and his client are deciding whether Hernandez should testify before a grand jury.

No one answered the door at the home where records say Hernandez lives.

A neighbor who refused to give his name called the teen's arrest "shocking" and "a tragedy for the family."

Asked about the arrest, Carter's girlfriend, Aleyah Cust, 19, said, "It's a big weight off my shoulders. I'd rather him be arrested than in the streets."

Staff writers Laura Rivera and Michelle Trauring contributed to this story.