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Two indicted in vicious slashing attack against 16-year-old girl

One man was having a sexual relationship a 14-year-old girl and ordered the attack after she tried to break it off, police said, though a different girl was mistakenly targeted.

A Queens man is under arrest after he allegedly ordered another man to attack a 14-year-old girl who broke off a sexual relationship with him -- though the man slashed the face of another 16-year-old girl by mistake instead, police said.

Wilson Lai, 25, of Oakland Gardens, and Devon Berkley, 36, of Allentown, Pennsylvania, are charged in a 19-count indictment including charges for first- and second-degree assault, fourth-degree conspiracy, endangering the welfare of a child and fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon.

Lai is also charged with second- and third-degree rape, second-and third-degree criminal sexual act, endangering the welfare of a child, third-degree criminal mischief, second-degree aggravated mischief and second-degree harassment in connection to his sexual relationship with the girl.


The victim was on her way to school around 8 a.m. last December on 147th Street when police said Berkley -- acting on Lai’s instructions -- came up behind her and slashed her face from her ear to her throat with a box cutter.

The weapon was dropped at the scene and recovered by police, according to the New York Daily New. The girl, later identified as Chinese exchange student JiaJia Liang, reportedly needed 200 stitches after the vicious attack.

From the Daily News report:

Three weeks after the attack, Lai allegedly left a letter on a car windshield outside the 14-year-old girl’s home and explained that JiaJia was cut by mistake — but he warned the younger girl that he would return to carve her up.

“I know a lot about you b----,” sources quoted from the letter. “Stop being a slut ... You f---ed with the wrong person.”

The malicious, expletive-laden missive also promised the girl that her “beautiful face” would soon be gone, the sources said.

“The defendants are accused of having conspired to physically assault a young girl with whom one of the defendants allegedly had a sexual relationship,” Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown said in a statement.

“In an alleged case of mistaken identity an innocent victim who was merely walking to school was slashed in the face by one of the defendants without warning or provocation. For the rest of her life she must bear the physical and emotional scars of that attack.”

If convicted, Berkley and Lai face up to 25 and 32 years in prison, respectively.

 

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