HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Fifteen years after a man was gunned down on a state highway on his way to work, federal prosecutors say they've solved the case and a gang member has been indicted on murder, assault and gun crimes.
A federal grand jury in Bridgeport indicted Alex Garcia, 37, of Danbury on Thursday, prosecutors announced Friday. The murder charge carries the possibility of the death penalty.
Garcia is accused of fatally shooting 28-year-old Mark Rebong, of Newtown, on Jan. 17, 2000, as Rebong was driving on Interstate 84 in Danbury. Prosecutors believe Rebong was killed in a "tragic case of mistaken identity" as Garcia tried to maintain or increase his position in the Latin Kings gang, U.S. Attorney Deirdre Daly said Friday.
Daly did not release details on what led to the indictment so many years after the killing.
"Although over 15 years have passed, the law enforcement team never forgot Mark," Daly said in a statement. "We hope that this indictment brings his family some small measure of solace."
Daly said Rebong was neither in a gang nor involved in any criminal activity. Family members said he was just driving to work as a hotel night auditor when he was shot.
"There is some satisfaction," Rebong's brother, Renan Rebong of Danbury, said about the indictment. "But it doesn't bring him back. ... I'm still like angry and upset about the whole thing that happened."
Garcia is serving a 40-year state prison sentence for attempted murder and assault. His lawyer, Robert Frost Jr., didn't return a message seeking comment Friday.
The state prison sentence stemmed from a 2004 attack on five men in Danbury. Garcia and several other men, including the leader of the Danbury Latin Kings, ambushed the victims — one of whom was shot by Garcia but survived and two others who were seriously injured but survived, according to court documents.