Cold case leads to Kings: Cop seeks locals’ aid in solving 30-year-old murder of Bklyn teens

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An out-of-state homicide detective is asking Brooklynites to help crack a three-decade-old probe into the murder of two presumed Kings County teens.

Boston police found the 14–18-year-old teenagers dead in a vacant lot on Oct. 6, 1988, after each was shot execution-style in the back of his head, according to Det. John Cronin of the Boston Police Department’s Unsolved Homicide Squad.

Officials could not find any identification on the boys, and nobody came to claim either body, one of which rotted beyond recognition by the time cops discovered it. Authorities’ subsequent DNA and fingerprint tests also provided no clues to their identities.

Investigators caught a lead later that year when they picked up a woman for crack possession, who claimed the victims were cocaine peddlers called “Clayton” and “Hooker” who may have hailed from Brooklyn, according to Cronin.

The woman alleged the duo worked for another dealer named “Flip,” also from Kings County, who sported two gold front teeth and got in trouble around the time of the murder when a rival gang beat him up, forcing him to hightail it back to New York City, the Boston investigator said.

Cronin suspects that Flip, or whoever assaulted him, may have knowledge of the nearly 30-year-old slaughter.

The sleuth, who took on the case in 2014, brought the case to local press outlets’ attention after unsuccessfully combing through New York City and national missing-persons databases to find clues to the victims’ identities, he said.

The boys, who Cronin said may be of Jamaican descent, are buried as John Does in a Boston municipal burial ground, and family members can reclaim their bodies once they’ve been identified.

Clayton was five-foot, four-inches tall, weighed 130-pounds, and was found wearing a gray sweater-jacket, blue jeans, and white Avia sneakers.

Hooker was five-foot, ten-inches tall, weighed 160-pounds, and was found wearing a black long-sleeve jersey, black pants, and blue-and-white Nike sneakers.

Anyone with information regarding the identities of Clayton, Hooker, or Flip can reach Det. Cronin via phone at (617) 343–5837, or via e-mail at

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at or by calling (718) 260-4505.
Updated 5:49 pm, July 9, 2018
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