An ex-convict with an extensive criminal record has been arrested for the brutal stabbings of two Brooklyn children in an elevator. Daniel St. Hubert was released from prison less than two weeks ago but was again taken into custody on Wednesday after critically injuring one of the children and killing the other.
Prince “P.J.”Joshua Avitto, who was six-years-old, died and Mikayla Capers, who is seven-years-old, was critically injured during the senseless attack; she is still in the hospital. Both children were stabbed in the elevator at the Boulevard Houses project on Schenck Avenue in East New York. The two children grew up together in the Boulevard Houses and had been best friends since they were toddlers. Mikayla was visiting P.J. when the stabbings took place.
Reportedly the two children were on their way to get Icees when they boarded the elevator where P.J. lived. St. Hubert got on the elevator after them, pulled out a knife and stabbed the children. Both children were taken to Brookdale University Hospital and Medical Center where P.J. was pronounced dead and Mikayla, left in critical condition, had to be transferred to New York Presbyterian Hospital.
One neighborhood resident, Sophia Diaz, said she was inside of her apartment when she heard someone calling her saying Mikayla had been stabbed. Diaz rushed outside and saw the girl, who had been stabbed in the chest and had cuts on her hand, covered in a huge amount of blood. Within seconds she began hearing people scream that P.J. had also been severely stabbed.
This vicious attack by the 27-year-old ex-convict left residents stunned and fearful. The community instantly began calling upon elected leaders for enhanced security in the neighborhood. The complex with consists of 18 buildings only one has security cameras. A sigh of relief was felt by all after St. Hubert was arrested on a quiet street in Ozone Park, Queens shortly at eight o’clock in the evening.
Mayor Bill de Blasio and Police Commissioner William J. Bratton held a news conference on Wednesday night to inform the community of the arrest. The announcement was received with thunderous applause. News of the attacker’s arrest travelled quickly throughout the neighborhood bringing a sense of peace. This community which had been racked by fear and mourning could finally move towards healing and a level or normalcy.
Upon hearing the news witnesses said P.J.’s mother, Arica McClinton, ran outside waving her hands in triumph. P.J.’s godfather, Henry Alston, said he was relieved to know that this killer was off the streets. He continued,
I am glad there was an arrest and no other family will have to suffer what me and mine has suffered.
A 25-year-old student, Jessica Gonzalez, said she was also elated by the news because she does not have to remain scared any longer. She had locked herself in her house after learning of the attack but now can finally sleep and can her children to the park.
Mikayla’s great-grandmother, Regeina Trevathan, said she wants to get a glimpse of the animal that did this. Trevathan, a retired corrections officer said,
I want to see the bastard’s face. He is not a crazy person; he is just an animal who does not belong on the face of the earth. People in prison have kids too and I do not think he is going to be a happy camper in prison this time around.
St. Hubert, who was recently released on May 23rd, has an extensive criminal record that includes arrests for assaults on a corrections officer and a police officer according to Robert K. Boyce, the chief of detectives. The ex-convict has served his full five-year sentence for assault and attempted murder. In September he was denied a conditional release for refusing to complete certain programs in the prison.
On Wednesday ex-convict Daniel St. Hubert was again arrested, this time for the brutal stabbings of two young children in an elevator. The attack left seven-year-old Makayla in critical condition at a local hospital and her six-year-old best friend, Prince “P.J.”Joshua Avitto is dead. The neighborhood rejoiced to learn he was off the streets.
By: Cherese Jackson (Virginia)