Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that WILLIAM SKINNER and DORIAN BROOKS, a/k/a “Kool-Aid,” pled guilty today in Manhattan federal court to charges relating to their involvement in the murder of Efren Cardenas on February 10, 1989, in Brooklyn, New York. SKINNER is scheduled to be sentenced on March 10, 2022, and BROOKS is scheduled to be sentenced on April 6, 2022, by U.S. District Judge Edgardo Ramos, who accepted today’s pleas.
U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “Today, William Skinner and Dorian Brooks admitted their participation in murdering Efren Cardenas over three decades ago, in February 1989. Today’s guilty pleas demonstrate that law enforcement will never give up on murder victims and their loved ones, no matter how long it takes to achieve justice.”
According to the allegations in the Indictment, and other filings and statements made in court:
On February 10, 1989, SKINNER and BROOKS killed Efren Cardenas, 30, in the vicinity of 280 Herkimer Street in the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn. During the murder, SKINNER and BROOKS shot Cardenas over 20 times. SKINNER and BROOKS committed the murder in furtherance of a conspiracy to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine.
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SKINNER, 51, and BROOKS, 51, each pled guilty to one count of conspiring to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine, which carries a maximum prison term of 20 years. The maximum potential sentence in this case is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendants will be determined by the judge.
Mr. Williams praised the outstanding investigative work of the New York City Police Department’s Cold Case Homicide Squad and the Special Agents of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York.
This case is being handled by the Office’s Violent and Organized Crime Unit. Assistant United States Attorneys Andrew K. Chan, Adam S. Hobson, and Frank J. Balsamello are in charge of the prosecution.