Long Island Man Convicted Of Murdering L&B Spumoni Gardens Owner
A Long Island man has been convicted in the mysterious killing of L&B Spumoni Gardens owner Louis Barbati.
On Monday, a jury found Andres “Andy” Fernandez guilty of second-degree murder and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon. Barbati was gunned down outside his Dyker Heights home in June of 2016 while carrying more than $15,000 in cash—which the killer left behind.
While authorities initially suspected a mob connection in the killing—possibly related to an ongoing dispute with a rival pizza owner over a sauce recipe—that motive was never firmly established. Police later speculated that the shooting may have been a robbery gone wrong.
Fernandez’s attorney, Javier Solano, reportedly argued that prosecutors did not prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. “I’m not going to say to you that there is no evidence at all to suggest he may have done it,” Solano told the jury in his closing statement, adding that “the pieces didn’t fit” and that video of Fernandez near Barbati’s home proved nothing.
“With today’s verdict this defendant has been brought to justice for the murder of a beloved husband, father and fixture of the Gravesend community,” Brooklyn D.A. Eric Gonzalez said in a statement. “I commend the jury for its hard work convicting this defendant, and for bringing some solace to the family, friends and many Brooklynites affected by this senseless tragedy.”
Fernandez faces up to 25 years to life in prison when he is sentenced next month.