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May 26, 2019

Long Island Latin King admits to 2005 killing of star college basketball player from Brooklyn

March 15, 2019
Tafare Berryman, 23, of Brooklyn, a star basketball player at C.W. Post, was shot dead in 2005 after a Latin Kings member mistakenly believed he was involved in a fight at a Long Island nightclub. (Debbie Egan-Chin / NY Daily News)

A Latin Kings member admitted Thursday he gunned down a star college basketball player nearly 14 years ago in a deadly case of mistaken identity.

Jaime Rivera, now 32, admitted to killing 22-year-old C.W. Post student and Brooklyn resident Tafare Berryman, after he mistakenly thought the basketball star was involved in a parking lot fight.


Berryman and his classmates were partying at the La Mansion nightclub in Long Beach, L.I. on April 2, 2005, celebrating a successful school fashion show earlier in the night, when a C. W. Post student got into a fight with some gang members inside, prosecutors said.

The fight spilled out into the club’s parking lot.

Berryman and a friend, Aaron Daly-Firth, came out of the club into the parking lot. They weren’t part — but Daly-Firth was hit in the head with a bottle as he walked by.

Daly-Firth and Berryman drove off, then pulled over several blocks away to tend to Daly-Firth’s head, which was bleeding heavily.

Berryman stepped out of the car, ready to take the driver’s wheel for his friend, when Rivera pulled up and shot Berryman — thinking, in error, the two Post students were part of the fracas.

The murder went unsolved for 12 years, until Nassau police and prosecutors developed new information that they turned over to the feds. Federal authorities arrested Rivera in February 2017.

He was scheduled to go on trial next month before taking a guilty plea Thursday.

The 6-foot-6 Berryman played hoops at Brooklyn’s Samuel Tilden High School, graduating early to play basketball at Niagara University and Southampton College before transferring to C. W. Post.

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