Westchester County District Attorney Miriam E. Rocah announced today that after a four-week trial, a jury found New York City resident Cynell Brown, 32, guilty of the 2018 murder of Tarrytown resident Jessica Wiltse.
The defendant was found guilty yesteray on November 16, 2022, of Murder in the Second Degree, Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree, Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Fourth Degree, and two counts of Tampering with Physical Evidence, all felonies. The defendant faces a sentence ranging from a minimum of 15 years to life to a maximum of 25 years to life in state prison when he is sentenced on January 12, 2023.
On February 27, 2018, at approximately 7:10 a.m., the defendant used a .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol to shoot 34-year-old Wiltse two times in the chest and arm in her home on White Plains Road in Tarrytown. The victim was transported to Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla, where she was pronounced dead.
As detailed during the trial, police recovered the gun that the defendant used to murder Wiltse in a garbage can at a bus stop near the victim’s home as well as a suitcase near the garbage can that contained papers with the defendant’s name and phone number. Police also recovered a bag of cocaine that the defendant discarded from the window of a cab as he fled the scene. Additionally, police obtained surveillance video showing the defendant purchasing a number of grocery items the night before the murder that were later recovered from the victim’s home.
The defendant was apprehended by the Port Authority Police Department, with the assistance of the FBI’s Westchester Safe Streets Task Force, at the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Manhattan on the evening of February 27, 2018. The multi-agency pursuit and investigation was conducted by the Tarrytown Police Department, with the assistance of the Greenburgh Police Department, the Greenburgh Drug and Alcohol Task Force, the Westchester County Department of Public Safety, the Irvington Police Department, the Ardsley Police Department, the Dobbs Ferry Police Department, the Sleepy Hollow Police Department, the FBI’s Westchester Safe Streets Task Force, the New York State Police, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority Police Department, the Westchester County Department of Laboratories and Research, and the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office.
The case is before Judge George Fufidio in Westchester County Court, and is being prosecuted by Major Case Bureau Chief Nadine Nagler and Counsel to the Trials and Investigations Division John O’Rourke.