Javier Sanchez, an Ecuadorian immigrant of 33 years, tragically lost his life in the vicinity of a Brooklyn gas station during what authorities believe was a robbery attempt. The incident occurred a mere two blocks from Sanchez’s home.
A father to a young daughter, Sanchez had only been in the U.S. for a little over a year after moving from Ambato, Ecuador. His 4-year-old daughter currently resides there with her mother. Recounting the events leading up to the tragedy, Paul Euza, the victim’s cousin, said to the Daily News, “He was coming home. He went to a party, danced, and hung out.”
Surveillance footage captured the chilling moments leading to the crime. Positioned at 1525 Myrtle Ave. next to Irving Ave. in the Bushwick neighborhood, cameras at the BP gas station documented the encounter. The video revealed at least three men approaching Sanchez in the station’s parking lot around 4 a.m. on Sunday.
A separate clip from inside the station’s store showed one of the individuals from the group consuming Modelo beer. Another man later joined him. The exact involvement of these two men in the subsequent crime remains unclear.
Demands and Resistance
The unfolding crime saw the suspects demand Sanchez’s wallet, which he handed over without hesitation. However, when they insisted on taking his backpack, Sanchez resisted. According to his uncle, Pablo Tayupanta, who spoke to ABC News, the bag contained essential documents like his passport and driver’s license. Sanchez had been employed both in construction and as an Uber driver.
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As of now, law enforcement has yet to make any arrests or identify any of the suspects. The NYPD has appealed to the public, urging anyone with relevant information to come forward. Tips can be communicated through various channels, ensuring the confidentiality of the informant.
Rising Criminal Activities in the Vicinity
Recent police data paints a grim picture of the area’s safety. The vicinity of the BP gas station has witnessed nine robberies in the past eight months, one of which targeted the gas station itself in March. Waquir Mazhar, the station’s manager, expressed his concerns, saying, “There are a lot of robberies here. They are neighborhood men, so they drink in the area. That’s why we had to install bulletproof glass. I think it was last year after we were robbed.”
This incident is not isolated, as gas stations across New York City have seen a surge in violent crimes. Earlier in the year, a 51-year-old man faced a similar fate in The Bronx. November also saw two tragic incidents: an attendant in El Bronx was fatally shot, and a 23-year-old Guatemalan man was beaten to death in Queens. Additionally, a robbery attempt in Brooklyn in October saw a gas station worker brutally attacked while his colleagues were robbed.
This series of incidents underscores the growing safety concerns surrounding gas stations in the city. As investigations continue and authorities work to ensure the safety of residents and workers, the community mourns the loss of a dedicated father and hardworking individual.