An ex-convict who formerly worked as a Manhattan building superintendent and his friend were indicted Tuesday for the disturbing sexual abuse and murder of a 74-year-old woman and beloved great-grandmother found gagged and bound in her Upper West Side apartment last month.
Lashawn Mackey, 43, and Terrence Moore, 53, were indicted for the murder of 74-year-old Maria Hernandez, who was found dead in her Upper West Side apartment with her hands and feet bound together behind her back, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg announced Tuesday.
The pair were charged in a New York Supreme Court indictment with two counts of murder in the second degree, one count of aggravated sexual abuse in the first degree, one count of burglary in the first degree, one count robbery in the first degree, and one count of burglary in the second degree.
“This was a brutal and callous murder that no family should ever have to experience. My thoughts are with Ms. Hernandez’s loved ones as they continue to grieve and recover from their loss,” Bragg said in a statement. “I thank the prosecutors in my office for quickly building this case and continuing to steadfastly uncover every piece of evidence.”
According to court documents and statements made on the record, Mackey worked as a temporary superintendent at Hernandez’s apartment building between May and August 2022.
On Jan. 18, Mackey and Moore allegedly entered the apartment building together. They forced open the doors to the superintendent’s office and tore a bolt lock away, prosecutors say. They allegedly cut the electrical wires to the surveillance video system and took the system itself away.
Responding NYPD officers found Hernandez in the apartment lying face down on the floor covered in strewn clothing, with bruises and lacerations across her body. Her hands and feet were bound together with rope. Mackey and Moore allegedly left the building with two rolling bags that belonged to Hernandez.
It was the victim’s sister, Maria Terrero, who told detectives she made the gruesome discovery around 9:30 p.m and dialed 911. Terrero had gone to check on Hernandez just hours after the two attended a Broadway matinee and had an early dinner together that evening, NY Daily News previously reported.
Hernandez’s daughter reportedly had expressed concern when she was unable to reach her mother.
At Mackey’s arraignment, prosecutors revealed that he is a career criminal who was sentenced to 23 years in 2000 after being convicted of first-degree assault.
That victim was stabbed 15 times and left lying in the middle of a Brooklyn street with “his intestines hanging out of his body,” the New York Post previously reported.
Mackey was released in 2019 after serving nearly 20 years in prison. He returned to prison in October 2021, but was released a month later, according to state records. He was arrested in August for grand larceny, burglary and petit larceny in Brooklyn, a crime for which he pleaded guilty on Dec. 21 and was expected back in court in February for sentencing.