DA Gonzalez Indicts Second Man In Video Game Designer Death

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Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez today announced that a 29-year-old Queens man has been arraigned on first-degree manslaughter charges for the fatal beating of an up-and-coming video game designer.

Damian Diaz, 29, of Ozone Park, Queens arraigned yesterday before Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Dineen Riviezzo for the beating death of video game designer and entrepreneur, Jose Zambrano, 26, in November 2019. Diaz and a previously indicted co-defendant, Joshua Hernandez, 25, of Bushwick,  allegedly attacked Zambrano on a Williamsburg street corner after he refused to give them a cigarette.

Attorney Eric Gonzalez
Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez

“The alleged violence this defendant and his accomplice inflicted claimed the life of a talented young man already making a name for himself in the business and video game communities. It is heartbreaking that such a senseless attack should deprive the victim, his family and friends from knowing his full potential. We will now seek to get justice for the victim and his loved ones,” said Gonzalez.

According to the indictment, at about 4:30 a.m., November 17, 2019, Diaz and Hernandez approached Zambrano at the intersection of Grand Street and Havermeyer Street in Williamsburg. It is alleged that one of the men asked the victim for a cigarette. When the victim refused, Diaz allegedly grabbed his arm.

Hernandez allegedly began striking the victim about the head before both defendants began taking turns hitting the victim until Zambrano and an eyewitness walked away. Diaz then allegedly followed the victim, approaching him down the street and striking the victim again, causing him to fall to the ground.

Zambrano lost consciousness when his head hit the pavement and was taken to Bellevue Hospital where he died four days later.

Police arrested Hernandez within an hour of the assault after he was identified by an eyewitness. Diaz was arrested on January 23, 2020 after police reviewed video surveillance that allegedly captured his involvement in the assault.

If convicted, Diaz faces up to 25 years in prison.