By Kevin Deutsch
A Bronx gang member has been charged in the 2015 slaying of a man he murdered in order to improve his standing in the organization, federal authorities said.
Jose “Hov Goon” Rodriguez, 27, fatally shot Daquan Cooper, 23, in Parkchester on June 25, setting off a four-plus year investigation that culminated in his indictment in Manhattan federal court Tuesday. Prosecutors charged Rodriguez with murder in aid of racketeering, conspiracy to commit murder in aid of racketeering, and gun crimes, officials said.
Rodriguez was a member or associate of a racketeering enterprise known as the “Beach Avenue Crew,” whose members dealt heroin and crack in addition to carrying out killings and attempted murders in the Bronx, according to the Department of Justice.
Rodriguez was already in federal custody serving a sentence for other crimes when prosecutors slapped him with charges in Cooper’s murder; a killing he and another gang member – who has not been publicly identified – carried out near 1595 Unionport Road in Parkchester, authorities said. A 35-year-old man was also wounded in the attack.
“Rodriguez allegedly ran with a gang whose calling card was violence and drug trafficking, and he is now charged with murder in aid of racketeering for his involvement in a 2015 homicide,” Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent-in-Charge Peter Fitzhugh said. “As alleged, he may have thought he was in the clear four years later, but strong law enforcement partnerships ensure that no one will get away with murder.”
Rodriguez’s attorney could not immediately be reached for comment.