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Before arrest, man suspected of killing Yazmeen Williams twice pulled gun on suspicious neighbors

Murder suspect Chad Irish is taken from the NYPD's 13th Precinct stationhouse on Wednesday. (Sam Costanza for the ˵Ӱ)
Murder suspect Chad Irish is taken from the NYPD’s 13th Precinct stationhouse on Wednesday. (Sam Costanza for the ˵Ӱ)

In the hours leading up to the arrest of the main suspect in the slaying of Yazmeen Williams, the man twice pulled a gun on people from the neighborhood who confronted him about the gruesome death, according to cops and one of the men he allegedly threatened, who spoke exclusively to the Daily News.

“He pulled it from under the seat like he was sitting on it,” Antowne Frazier, 47, said of Chad Irish, who uses a wheelchair.

Irish, 55, was charged with second-degree murder Wednesday for allegedly slaying Williams, 31, whose decomposing corpse was found tossed out next to trash outside a Kips Bay apartment building Friday.

Irish, who was arrested Monday, denied all the allegations against him as he was led out of the NYPD’s 13th Precinct in a wheelchair on Wednesday as police continued to search for the gun that killed Williams. The victim was shot in the head at close range.

“I didn’t do anything. I haven’t the slightest idea what you’re talking about. Who is Yazmeen?” Irish told reporters. “They said I did something to somebody. I didn’t do anything.”

Along with murder, Irish was charged with weapon possession and concealment of a human corpse.

Hours before cops carried Irish on a stretcher out of his building on E. 28th St. near Second Ave. in the Straus Houses as an angry mob swarmed him, Frazier, a former neighbor, spotted him a block away.

“He doesn’t ever really come outside,” Frazier said of the 9:30 a.m. encounter. “You never come outside, so why you outside now? Things didn’t sit right.”

When he and a friend approached Irish about Williams’ killing, the cornered Irish allegedly threatened them with a gun.

Frazier said that was the first of two times Irish menaced him with a gun Monday — an allegation Irish denied.

“I didn’t flash a gun at anybody,” the suspect said Wednesday evening.

Rumors began swirling around the neighborhood when police discovered Williams’ body, with locals quickly assuming Irish, who she was living with, had something to do with her death and sparking neighbors to confront him for days, according to Frazier. Their suspicions increased when cops said they had recovered video of a man in an electric wheelchair dragging the corpse down the sidewalk before dumping it.

Yazmeen Williams
Murder victim Yazmeen Williams.

Irish is capable of walking but often uses a wheelchair to get around, police and neighbors say.

“We heard the guy in the wheelchair had told [a neighbor] that he wheeled that bag over there,” Frazier told the Daily News. “A lot of people were approaching him.”

Later Monday, Frazier and Irish came face to face again in Bellevue South Park.

“He just showed up. I said ‘Yo, what did you do to that young girl?’” recounted Frazier.

Irish again threatened him with a gun, said Frazier.

Frazier called 911, also reporting the earlier incident, and began to pursue Irish.

“When I gave chase, everybody in the park followed.”

Irish pulled out a gun and “menaced” the crowd that began surrounding him, according to police.

“Several people from the neighborhood were quite angry with Mr. Irish over this incident, and they surrounded him and he produced a pistol and menaced them. He then fled the location back to his apartment, where he was placed under arrest by detectives and patrol,” NYPD Chief of Detectives Joseph Kenny said Tuesday.

“He’s very fast in that wheelchair,” said Frazier. “He barreled through people, made it in the elevator and made it upstairs.”

As Irish hunkered down in his apartment, the crowd only grew outside the lobby of the building, as seen in surveillance video obtained by The News. At the same time, police were on their way to the building to take the suspect into custody for dumping Williams’ body.

“They said, ‘You really helped us,’” Frazier said of the police.

Irish was attacked by the mob — which grew to include members of Williams’ family who were tending to the nearby memorial where her body was found — as police and medics carried him out on a stretcher and into a waiting ambulance.

In addition to be being charged with concealing Williams’ corpse, Irish is charged with two counts of weapon possession and menacing for his confrontations with neighbors Monday, cops said.

Irish, who has an extensive criminal history dating back to 1985, has a twin brother, police sources say, who sometimes uses the suspect’s name and date of birth. The twin even served two years in prison for robbery under Irish’s name.

With Thomas Tracy

Originally Published:

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