The victim was slashed twice on the left side of her face on 147th Street near 13th Avenue.
By Forum Staff
Two men have pleaded guilty to first-degree assault in the violent slashing of a teenage exchange student, mistaken for someone else, as she walked to school in Whitestone in December 2015.
District Attorney Brown said, “In pleading guilty, the defendants have admitted to a heinous attack on a teenage girl. The victim in this case was not the target, but nonetheless she will forever be marred by the memory of what happened to her and the scars on her face. The defendants in the case deserve to be incarcerated as punishment for their crime.”
The defendants were identified as Wilson Lai, 26, of Oakland Gardens, Queens, and Devon Berkley, 39, of Allentown, Pennsylvania.
The pair of slahers pleaded guilty to first-degree assault yesterday before Queens Supreme Court Justice Gregory Lasak, who indicated he will sentence them on February 14, 2018.
Lai will receive a 19-year prison sentence and Berkley 18 years – with both defendants’ sentences followed by five years’ post release supervision.
Authorities say that according to the charges, Lai and Berkley orchestrated a plan in December 2015 to assault a teenager who lived in Whitestone, Queens. However, on December 16, 2015, Berkley ran up to the wrong teenager and attacked a 16-year-old exchange student who was living in the same house as the intended target. The exchange student was on her way to school when Berkley slashed her twice in the face and ran from the scene.
The victim was hospitalized and recovered from the violent attack, but she has two long scars lining the left side of her face.