Man arrested in Harlem fatal shooting of pregnant mother had 17 previous arrests

Justin Soriano, 40, was arrested by the NYPD in connection with the murder of Shanice Young.  NYPD said Soriano has had 17 previous arrests

Justin Soriano, 40, was arrested by the NYPD in connection with the murder of Shanice Young. NYPD said Soriano has had 17 previous arrests

A career criminal with 17 previous arrests was taken into custody Thursday morning in connection with Sunday’s fatal shooting of his pregnant ex-girlfriend after she came home from her baby shower.

Justin Soriano, 40, allegedly shot Shanice Young in front of her two children during an argument with her new boyfriend and father of her child, according to the NYPD.

Young, who was just five days away from her due date, and her unborn baby died, police said.

“Our hope is that this detention will begin the process of closing down the family and just as importantly the community for this horrible, horrible crime,” NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea said at a news conference Thursday afternoon.

Soriano has a long criminal record with 17 arrests, including gun and drug possession, selling drugs and resisting arrest, the NYPD said Thursday.

Most recently, he was released from prison in 2018 and released on parole until June 2020.

James Essig, NYPD Chief of Investigation, who spoke after Shea, said, “This incident shook the conscience of the city.”

Shanice Young, 31, was returning to her Harlem apartment at 1am on Sunday after her baby shower when she was shot during an altercation between her ex-boyfriend Soriano and the father of her unborn child.

NYPD chief detective James Essig (onstage) said during Thursday's press conference: 'This incident shook the conscience of the city'

NYPD chief detective James Essig (onstage) said during Thursday's press conference: 'This incident shook the conscience of the city'

NYPD chief detective James Essig (onstage) said during Thursday’s press conference: ‘This incident shook the conscience of the city’

A memorial service for Shanice Young, whose father said she would give birth in five days, was held outside her Harlem apartment on Monday.

A memorial service for Shanice Young, whose father said she would give birth in five days, was held outside her Harlem apartment on Monday.

A memorial service for Shanice Young, whose father said she would give birth in five days, was held outside her Harlem apartment on Monday.

Young was bringing presents from her baby shower to the lobby of her building at 300 West 128 Street, in Harlem, when an argument broke out between Soriano and her current boyfriend.

She was shot in the head as she tried to break it.

‘[The gunman] came in to chase the boyfriend,” Jose Morales, the super from Young’s building, told the… Daily news. “They ran through here and out the other side and they ran down.”

The family of the deceased mother told PIX 11 that her ex-boyfriend was stalking her and lurking outside her apartment.

“I helped her put her presents in the car and I said, ‘See you tomorrow,'” her father Thurman Young, 57, told the News.

“She was to have her baby in five days. She said, “This baby is coming in five days, Daddy, get ready.” I said, “I’ll be ready.”‘

Young was unconscious and unresponsive when police arrived, and she was pronounced dead at Harlem Hospital.

The woman’s family told ABC 7 that her daughters, ages 15 and six, witnessed the shooting and watched as their mother was loaded into an ambulance.

'My heart I can't ……….  My sister is really gone,

'My heart I can't ……….  My sister is really gone,

‘My heart I can’t ………. My sister is really gone,” Young’s sister, Metania, posted on her Facebook page yesterday

“If I had known last night that it was the last time I saw you, I would have stayed, you would still be alive,” Shanice’s sister, Metania, wrote on Facebook. ‘I can’t believe I let him do this’

Police said Shanice Young was bringing gifts from her from the shower to the lobby of her building at 300 West 128 Street (pictured) around 1:16 a.m. when a fight broke out between her ex-boyfriend and her child's father.

Police said Shanice Young was bringing gifts from her from the shower to the lobby of her building at 300 West 128 Street (pictured) around 1:16 a.m. when a fight broke out between her ex-boyfriend and her child's father.

Police said Shanice Young was bringing gifts from her from the shower to the lobby of her building at 300 West 128 Street (pictured) around 1:16 a.m. when a fight broke out between her ex-boyfriend and her child’s father.

Shanice Young (second from right) is pictured here with her sister, Metania (second from left) and friends in Harlem

Shanice Young (second from right) is pictured here with her sister, Metania (second from left) and friends in Harlem

Shanice Young (second from right) is pictured here with her sister, Metania (second from left) and friends in Harlem

“Shanice was a victim,” her sister, Metania (pictured), told ABC 7 at a memorial to her sister’s death on Monday

Shanice’s sister, Metania, posted on her Facebook page: ‘My heart I can’t ………. My sister is really gone.

“If I had known last night that it was the last time I saw you, I would have stayed, you would still be alive,” she wrote in a later message.

“I can’t believe I let him do this to you.”

Young’s brother, Teddy, posted photos of the shower on his Facebook page Sunday night.

“Tonight was beautiful, baby S can come now #family ties,” he wrote.

Young's brother, Teddy, posted photos of the shower on his Facebook page Sunday night

Young's brother, Teddy, posted photos of the shower on his Facebook page Sunday night

Young’s brother, Teddy, posted photos of the shower on his Facebook page Sunday night

“Tonight was beautiful, baby S can come now #family ties,” Young’s brother, Teddy, wrote of the shower on Facebook

“I won’t tag you because a picture is worth a thousand words I love you,” he wrote in a post the next day, which was inundated with condolences.

“Come on Fam, we gotta do better than this,” Young’s friend, Shari Logan, wrote on Facebook. “#ShaniceYoung from Harlem was pregnant and killed by her ex after the baby shower.”

“This was totally #pointless and #unnecessary.”

“It was a beautiful night,” Young’s father told News about the baby shower. ‘Me and my daughter danced, father-daughter dance, and I cut the cake… It was full. We had music, a lot of food, a lot of drinking.’

“This here was a senseless shooting,” Harlem Hospital chaplain Robert Rice told PIX. “I am very upset and I am angry. As a clergy I shouldn’t be angry, but this one here touched my heart.’

NYC has seen a spike in crime so far this year, with the 476 recorded in the week between Sept. 6 and Sept. 12, up 8.2 percent from the 440 recorded for the same period in 2020.

The crime rate has increased by almost six percent in a year, from 14,543 to September 12, 2020 to 15,395 so far this year.

But the homicide rate has fallen 4.4 percent this year, from 340 between January and mid-September 2020 to 325 for the same period this year.

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