BROOKLYN (WABC) --The ex-boyfriend of a correction officer killed in Brooklyn faced a judge Wednesday to answer to murder charges.
Police say 35-year-old Keon Richmond shot 25-year-old Alastasia Bryan five times, execution-style, as she sat in her car at Avenue L and East 73rd Street in Bergen Beach last December. She was preparing to drive to Rikers Island for work.
Richmond, who has 31 prior arrests, was charged months ago in a separate case in which police say he set a previous girlfriend's car on fire. His current girlfriend, 24-year-old Shirley Mejia, is charged with hindering prosecution in the Bryan case.
"Officer Alastasia Bryan never even had a chance to defend herself from this cowardly defendant, who allegedly ambushed her in a deliberate, cold-blooded and calculated shooting," acting Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez said. "We now intend to hold him and his current girlfriend accountable for their alleged roles in this case as we seek justice for Officer Bryan's heartbroken family and friends."
Authorities say Richmond fled the scene in a Hyundai Elantra with license plates registered to Mejia, and that two days later, Mejia paid to have the car stored at a mechanic's shop in New Jersey after Richmond removed the plates.
"You come out in the morning and you hear about these difficult crimes and you wonder, are you safe?" Gonzalez said. "So these matter to all of Brooklyn. It matters to the family and matters to all of Brooklyn. And with these indictments today, it's a first step."
Cell site records, surveillance video and other electronic data reportedly place Richmond at the scene of the homicide at the time of the murder and captured his flight to New Jersey after the shooting.
"First, I want to thank the Lord that they arrested him," the victim's mother, Ingrid Bryan said. "And number two, I know justice is going to be served for my daughter Alastasia Bryan. He's a cold-blooded killer."
Richmond pleaded not guilty and was ordered held without bail, while Mejia's bail was set at $50,000.
Both defendants were ordered to return to court on March 15.
If convicted, Richmond faces up to 25 years to life in prison. Mejia faces up to seven years in prison.