Man sentenced in fatal stabbing of restaurant co-worker

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Nicasio-Ramirez, center, sentenced Wednesday in Westchester County
Court

WHITE PLAINS – A Queens man was sentenced in Westchester County
Court on Wednesday to 14 years in state prison for the crime of manslaughter
and one year for criminal possession of a weapon. Both sentences will
run concurrently.

As Judge Barry Warhit passed sentence on Francisco Smile Nicasio-Ramirez,
he reminded him of how “senseless” a killing this was.

Nicasio-Ramirez, 23, pled guilty to both counts in May.

On October 17, 2017 Nicasio-Ramirez and the victim, Rafael Pena, were
working together in the kitchen of Dia & Noche Restaurant on McLean
Avenue in Yonkers when an argument broke out over water being splashed.

Nicasio-Ramirez grabbed a kitchen knife and stabbed Pena, who was then
taken to a local hospital by another co-worker, where he later died.
Nicasio-Ramirez was arrested at the scene.

The family of the victim was in the court for sentencing and asked Judge
Warhit that a letter written by the victim’s sister be read aloud.
In her impact statement on behalf of the entire family, she reminded the
court that her brother left behind an adolescent son, and told the defendant,
despite what happened, “I do not want to hold onto vengeance. Vengeance
you leave to God.” She said she hoped Nicasio-Ramirez “will
transform himself into a good person.”