Gunman commits suicide as cops swarm
By David Greene
BRONX, NEW YORK, October 17- The man suspected of gunning down his estranged wife and her lover in a motel parking lot committed suicide in Florida on Tuesday.
According to published reports, 42-year-old Joseph Kernizan killed himself as law enforcement officials cornered him in a Miami residence. The man suspected of gunning down two people at the Holiday Motel outside Co-op City reportedly opened fire on officers as they approached the residence. Cops sent a robot into the room armed with a video camera and saw that Kernizan suffering a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Cops recovered a handgun and two fully loaded AK-47 assault rifles.
Kernizan was holed up in his friend’s residence when cops swarmed. Authorities had turned their attention to Florida after receiving tips generated from the intense media coverage of the shooting.
The suicide capped off a manhunt for Kernizan following the double homicide.
Officers from the 47th Precinct were called to the Holiday Motel, located at 2291 New England Thruway, at 3:13 a.m., on Saturday, October 13, and discovered the victims lying in the parking lot. Sources say both victims were shot in the head and died at the scene.
Bronx homicide detectives would soon identify the victims as Tracy Bennett, 38, of Elmont, NY., and Wayne Hamilton, 50, of Milwaukee, WI. Hamilton a popular reggae singer who performed under the stage name, "Captain Barkey," was also reported to have been shot in the back.
Witnesses stated that after shooting Hamilton, Bennett begged her assailant not to shoot her--when the gunman reportedly shot her twice and sped away in a vehicle.
Bennett and Hamilton reportedly met at an E. Gun Hill Road watering-hole the night before and were exiting the motel when the shooting took place.
The following day the NYPD would release a police mug shot of the suspected shooter, identified as music producer Joseph Kernizan, 42, an ex-boyfriend of Bennett's, who reportedly had a restraining order against Kernizan.
Hamilton reportedly taunted his alleged killer in a 2010 song titled, "Nah Lef Joe," where he sang about Bennett's relationship with Kernizan.