A Son in a Shadow, Finding His Way, Meets a Grim End

Then on Wednesday, three months after the killing, two suspects were arrested: twin brothers whom Mr. Carini had known for many years. They were caught halfway across the country after a high-speed chase that ended inside a Walmart.

With the arrests came the realization that nothing in the history of the victim or his father could have predicted what the police said was his bizarre end at the hand of old friends.

Mr. Carini was born in 1982 under a cloud of crime. His father, also Carmine Carini, an associate of the Gambino family, went to prison when his son was 3 years old, convicted of murdering a record store owner. A second son, Vincent, had been born just days before his arrest.


After his flower shop, Fountain Blue, closed, the younger Carmine Carini opened a pop-up florist stall outside a barbershop in Mill Basin, Brooklyn.

In 2007, new evidence would show it was not the elder Mr. Carini but his cousins who had committed the murder. When the elder Carmine was released from prison that year, his namesake son was 24, and Vincent, 22. They had grown up fatherless, in the shadow of what many considered an exemplary display of don’t-rat-on-your-own fortitude.

By then, the younger Carmine was finding his way, for good and bad.

“Like anyone who grew up without a father, he had to learn his own way to become a man,” said Christina Frisone, a girlfriend and the mother of their son. “You make mistakes in life, not thinking of the consequences afterwards because you’re so young.”

In 2003, when he was 21, Carmine and another man were arrested in Brooklyn for robbing 12 people in 12 different locations in 60 minutes, using a machete to scare their victims, the police said. They stole $500. Mr. Carini served five years in prison, coming out in 2009.

There would not be a reunion with his father.

The year before, unable to hold down a job, the elder Carmine Carini, with others, had committed a series of robberies on Staten Island. They were dressed like police officers and targeted specific types of victims: drug dealers and gambling establishments.

“I tried my best to be a good citizen for myself and my sons,” he told a judge at his sentencing in 2010, according to a court transcript. He had been living with Vincent. “Me and my son had a nice apartment and did long-awaited things together. Then I lost my job. Things got worse by the week.”


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