You are reading

Corona Man Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison in Stray Bullet Death of Jackson Heights Woman

Bertha Arriaga with her husband and three young sons (Photo: GoFundMe)

March 28, 2022 By Christian Murray

A 32-year-old Corona man has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for the firing of an illegal gun that killed a mother of three children—via a stray bullet— inside her Jackson Heights apartment in 2020.

Issam Elabbar, who pleaded guilty in December 2021 to manslaughter in the second degree, killed Bertha Arriaga, 43, when he fired an illegal gun on a Jackson Heights street at around 1 a.m. on Sept. 30, 2020, and a stray bullet pierced a window of her 3rd floor apartment hitting her in the neck.

Arriaga’s 14-year-old son heard his mother gasping for air in the kitchen and then discovered her in a pool of blood on the floor. Her husband performed CPR but the injury proved fatal.

“The victim of this senseless crime was in her home – a place where one would expect to be safe from harm,” said Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz in a statement. “Tragically, the woman’s oldest son discovered his mother gasping for air and bleeding to death.”

Bertha Arriaga was found by her son lying on the kitchen floor with a fatal bullet wound inside their third floor apartment at 91-16 34th Ave. (Google Maps)

Arriaga was killed while she was looking out her kitchen window after she heard loud noises on the street.

At the time, there were two men trying to steal a bicycle in the vicinity of her 34th Avenue and 92nd Street building.

According to police, Elabbar fired the fatal shot over his shoulder as he was leaving the scene. The bullet ripped through the window and pierced Arriaga’s neck.

The NYPD released video footage of the men trying to steal the bike shortly after Arriaga’s death. Police received a tip identifying Elabbar as one of the two men in the footage.

Elabbar, who also pleaded guilty to criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree, was also sentenced to five years’ post release supervision in addition to his 15-year sentence.

Arriaga, a Mexican immigrant, left behind her husband and three sons.

email the author: [email protected]

5 Comments

Click for Comments 
Robert

He took an innocent life. He took a mother away from her children. He does not deserve to see the light of day. Lock him up, throw away the key and let him rot in prison like the lowlife scum he is. No forgiveness for criminals and street parasites.

Reply
Jorge Colon

Is it ok to ask if the “32-year-old Corona man” s here legally? The article twice described his weapon as an “illegal gun”. What is the immigration status of Issam Elabbar?

8
3
Reply
Javier

Why? Are you going to blame Biden too? In case the answer is yes, Trump was President in September of 2020.

1
2
Reply
Jorge Colon

No Javier, I am not blaming Biden (nor Trump). I am simply asking “What is the immigration status of Issam Elabbar?”

However, for the next 20, 30 40..years I will “blame Biden” for every murder, rape assault etc. that each of the Biden illegals commit. Since Biden’s inauguration that number is two million and growing.
https://www.illegalaliencrimereport.com/

2
2
Reply
Javier

Exactly. Biden just got elected. Not even HE can clean up every single mess that was the dumpsterfire of the Trump presidency in one yr. And Biden isn’t responsible for crime in NY, the MAYOR is.
Maybe you should be a part of the solution instead of being a part of the problem.

Reply

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Borough president hears from community members on budget needs throughout Queens

During a two-day public hearing on the mayor’s 2024 preliminary budget, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. listened to testimonies from 14 community board representatives, community stakeholders and members of the public on where the money should be spent in Queens. 

The public hearings were held both in-person and via Zoom on Monday, Jan. 30, and Tuesday, Jan. 31, at Queens Borough Hall. The testimonials will be used to develop the Queens Borough Board’s FY24 preliminary budget priorities in the coming weeks. 

‘He didn’t deserve to die’: Borough President Richards leads emotional candlelight vigil for Tyre Nichols

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards held a candlelight vigil for Tyre Nichols outside Queens Borough Hall Monday, Jan. 30 after Nichols’ death at the hands of police officers in Memphis, Tenn., made national headlines for the brutality in which the officers beat him.

Almost immediately after news broke about Nichols’ death, the Memphis police officers who beat him to death were fired and charged with murder. The police department released the body cam footage of the fatal beating on Jan. 27, but many people, including some at the vigil, have refused to watch it due to its extremely graphic nature.

Op-Ed: This Year’s State Budget Must Prioritize Climate, Jobs, and Justice for New York

Op-Ed, Jan. 30, By Assemblymember Jessica González-Rojas

In a time of rampant economic inequality and environmental injustice, it is easy to feel defeated.  Here in Queens and across New York State, however, communities are organizing for a better future. New Yorkers from different backgrounds and with different lived experiences are proving that we can build community, organize, and create a future that reflects our shared values.

BP launches new advisory panel for youth to become civically engaged in the future of Queens

In an effort to get more young people involved in civics, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards has created a new advisory panel known as the Youth and Young Adult Council to introduce the “youngest and fiercest” community advocates to both community service and organization.

Members of the advisory body will advocate concerns through means of community engagement by participating in one of two cohorts. The first will be made up of high school representatives between the ages of 13 and 17, while the second cohort will be comprised of young adults between the ages of 18 and 25.

Raga sworn in as first-ever Filipino American elected to the state Legislature

More than 300 community members attended the historic inauguration of Assemblyman Steven Raga as the first Filipino American elected to office in New York state.

Many who attended the swearing-in event at the Queens Museum in Flushing Meadows Corona Park wore traditional and cultural attire to the event at the building that once housed the General Assembly of the newly formed United Nations from 1946 to 1950 until its current home in Manhattan became available for the world body.