By Jonathan Sperling
A cold-blooded robber who murdered a Long Island convenience store clerk was sentenced to 30 years in prison for his crimes, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York announced yesterday.
Queens Village resident Jermaine Jackson, 25, and another man entered AL Mini Market in Valley Stream — just blocks away from the Queens border — on Dec. 16, 2016 wearing masks and threatening the cashier with a semi-automatic handgun. While Jackson held the store’s employees at gunpoint, his co-conspirator went about taking money from the cash register.
Store employee Edwin Lopez grabbed a bottle in an attempt to resist the two robbers but was shot once by Jackson. When Jackson tried leaving the store, Lopez gave chase, at which point Jackson shot him several more times, killing him. The two robbers fled the store empty-handed.
Lopez left behind a wife and teenage daughter.
“Jackson senselessly murdered a hard-working man who was just trying to support his wife and teenage daughter. While this sentence cannot return Mr. Lopez to his family and community, it will ensure that others will be protected from Jackson for decades to come and it will make other criminals think twice before taking a life,” said U.S. Attorney Richard P. Donoghue. “It is my hope that today’s sentence brings some measure of closure for the Lopez family.”
U.S. District Judge Sandra J. Feuerstein handed down the 365-month sentence, followed by five years’ supervised release. Jackson pled guilty to the murder in December 2017.
“The actions of Mr. Jackson brought an unknowable grief to the Lopez family that will be felt for years to come,” stated ATF Special Agent-in-Charge Ashan Benedict. “Today’s sentence provides some semblance of closure to a family that never deserved to be touched by this senseless violence. May Mr. Jackson spend every minute of his sentence pondering his grievous actions and the toll they took on an innocent family. I would like to thank our partners in the NCPD and NYPD that stand shoulder to shoulder with ATF in the fight against violent criminals like Mr. Jackson.”