New York Daily News

My gun jammed: Susp in slays of Bronx brothers


One of the shooters charged with killing two brothers and injuring two others in a spray of bullets outside a Bronx Popeyes Friday had his gun jam before he could fire off more rounds, prosecutor­s said Monday.

The other alleged shooter was arrested as he was cutting off his long locks — a distinguis­hing feature cops had spotted in surveillan­ce footage of the shooting.

Salvatore Rivera, 51, and Jose Parilla, 32, are charged with murder and other charges in the deaths of brothers Jeremiah Smith, 24, and Devren Smith, 37, police said.

The accused gunmen fired off shots outside the fast food joint on East Tremont and Hughes Aves. in Tremont around 2:30 p.m. Friday, also hitting two other men with bullets, according to cops.

The two survivors, ages 58 and 36, were struck in the ankle and buttocks and were treated at St. Barnabas Hospital and released.

The Smith brothers died of their wounds at the same hospital within nine hours of each other.

Following separate arraignmen­ts in Bronx Criminal Court, Rivera and Parilla were ordered held without bail.

The men admitted to police they were at the scene of the shooting and fired off rounds from two guns, prosecutor­s said. Parilla told cops the gun he was using jammed as he fired into the crowd.

“My client vehemently denies ever making [a statement],” Parilla’s defense attorney said.

The Smith brothers’ aunts held each other as they sobbed while prosecutor­s read off charges at the hearing.

“Oh, my God!” one of the women screamed in the hallway outside the courtroom Monday afternoon. “My nephews will never come back!!”

At Rivera’s arraignmen­t Sunday night, prosecutor­s said that when cops caught up to him, he was cutting off his hair, which had been long when he was spotted on surveillan­ce footage earlier that day.

He admitted to arresting officers he was at the scene of the shooting and fired off rounds from a .38-caliber handgun, which cops recovered while executing a search warrant, prosecutor­s said.

On Sunday, Devren and Jeremiah’s brother told the Daily News the family does not know the gunmen.

“It just happened. It’s a shock,” said Daquan Shepard, 32. “Nobody expected to lose two of their siblings in one day, especially to something like this.”

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