Albany's 9th homicide of 2021 spreads gun violence to the Pine Hills |

Albany's 9th homicide of 2021 spreads gun violence to the Pine Hills

Dan Levy
Updated: May 30, 2021 11:42 PM
Created: May 30, 2021 07:34 PM

ALBANY - Police say it was 3:00 a.m. Sunday morning when a 29-year old Hamilton Street resident got out of his car in front Sabatino's Liquor Store at the corner of Quail Street and Elberon Place and was confronted by two individuals. After an argument ensued, one of the assailants took out a gun and shot the late night shopper.

"When the officers arrived they located a 29-year old man inside a store at that location with a gunshot wound," according to Albany Police Spokesman Steve Smith. "That victim sustained very serious injuries and was unfortunately pronounced deceased at the scene."

Smith says this latest case of violence in the streets has expanded an already active police investigation who he says continue to work around the clock.

The Quail Street killing is the ninth homicide of 2021, and the sixth this month.

"I don't have any information right now about any of the recent shootings being related," Smith says, "but certainly we're not ruling that out."

"It's spreading like cancer and there doesn't seem to be any end to it," said Anthony Sabatino, whose family opened the liquor store in 1964 but recently turned it over to a new owner.

Sabatino says it's "very unsettling" what he sees happening in what he has long thought of as a "quiet and peaceful" part of the city.

"It's spreading and now it's in the Pine Hills area," Sabatino points out, "Where's it going to go next? New Scotland (Avenue) area? I don't know where it's going to go. Who knows what's going to happen? But enough is enough."

Sabatino is now a commercial real estate broker who says an out-of-town client recently called him, interested in a Pine Hills property, but also mentioned he was concerned about the violence, comparing Albany to Chicago.

"Can you imagine that Albany, New York, the city that I love, that I grew up in, is now becoming a Little Chicago?" Sabatino asked rhetorically, "Shame on us."

As of 6:00 p.m. Sunday night, police were withholding the victim's name pending family notification.

They're hoping surveillance video from the area will help their investigation. They're also asking for the public's help, urging anyone who saw or heard anything at the scene, or anyone who has information, to contact them.

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