A Bedford-Stuyvesant man will spend decades behind bars for a murderous crime of passion, according to the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office.
A Brooklyn judge sentenced 25-year-old Maurice Hennegan to 32 years to life in prison for gunning down a man who was romantically involved with Hennegan’s estranged girlfriend, according to prosecutors. Hennegan was convicted by a jury in March, and sentenced on April 10 by Supreme Court Justice Vincent Del Giudice.
According to trial testimony, Hennegan confronted his ex-girlfriend on the morning of Sept. 28, 2016, about a relationship she had with the victim, 38-year-old Neil Thompson. Hennagan then went to the Bedford-Stuyvesant laundromat where Thompson worked, before finding him down the street, entering a deli at the corner of Hart Street and Tompkins Avenue.
At approximately 7:24 a.m., Hennegan followed the victim into the deli and fired a revolver multiple times from point blank range, killing Thomspson and hitting a 64-year-old bystander in the hand, prosecutors said.
Hennegan can be seen in surveillance footage from inside the deli during the incident, and he admitted his guilt in multiple text messages to associates following the shooting, but managed to evade authorities for several months, using elaborate disguises to mask his identity. The fugitive donned glasses and a fake mustache, grew out his hair, and used a walking cane, according to the District Attorney’s office.
Hennegan was eventually arrested, while in possession of 19 twists of crack-cocaine, on Feb. 16, 2017, at Varet Street near Manhattan Avenue in Williamsburg, according to prosecutors. He was convicted of second-degree murder and third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.
Following the sentencing, District Attorney Eric Gonzalez blasted the Hennegan’s recklessness and committed his office to cracking down on gun violence.
“This is just another example of senseless gun violence that cut short the life of a well-regarded member of the community and endangered everyone in that deli that morning, including a senior citizen who was shot in the hand,” said Gonzales. “We will not tolerate gun violence in Brooklyn and will continue to pursue justice in these cases.”