NEW YORK (Reuters) - After spending 15 years in prison, a New York man was shot within minutes of his release after he got into a car not knowing that another ex-convict with a gun and a grudge was hiding in the trunk, state police said on Friday.
Devon Simmons, 33, had intended to catch a train from the prison in Otisville, New York, back home to New York City on Thursday morning after getting out on parole. Instead, he accepted a ride from a man in a car with Illinois license plates, Pierce Gallagher, a state police captain, said.
Hiding in the trunk was Jerome Mack, who knew Simmons from a different prison. Before 15 minutes had elapsed, Mack emerged and shot Simmons, Gallagher said.
“The motive at this time appears to be prior bad blood between Simmons and Mack from when the two of them were jointly held at another state correctional facility a couple of years prior,” Gallagher said at a televised news conference.
Simmons, who had been sentenced for assault, sale of a controlled substance and criminal possession of a weapon, was able to stumble to a nearby train station, where people came to his aid and called the police. He was hospitalized and is recovering from his injuries.
Police arrested the suspected driver, Edgar Wilson, and Mack, both 35, at their apartments in New York City on Thursday morning. They were charged with attempted murder and criminal possession of a weapon, and are being held in jail without bail, Gallagher said.
It was not clear whether the two suspects, who are next due in court on Wednesday, had a lawyer.
Reporting by Jonathan Allen; Editing by Frank McGurty and Doina Chiacu