More than two decades after a man was gunned down outside a Worcester nightclub, a suspect who was arrested in the Dominican Republic in 2017 was convicted for the murder on Friday, Worcester District Attorney Joseph Early’s office said.
The jury found Edwin Novas guilty of second degree murder in the Christmas Eve 1999 slaying of 26-year-old Danny Nicasio, the office said in a statement released Saturday.
He was also found guilty of armed assault and battery with intent to murder, carrying a firearm without a license, possessing ammunition without an FID card, and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, the statement said.
Sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 1.
Nicasio, a father of two who also went by the name Danny Guzman, was outside the former Tropigala nightclub around 2 a.m. on Dec. 24, 1999, when Novas opened fire, allegedly targeting another man with whom he had an argument inside the club, according to the Worcester Telegram and Gazette.
Nicasio was shot in the chest and later died at a hospital, the district attorney’s office said. Another man was shot in the arm but survived, the statement said.
Novas later fled to his native Dominican Republic.
He was indicted in 2002, the Telegram and Gazette reported, but Nicasio’s friends and families had to wait another 15 years for their relative’s now-convicted killer to face the charges. The case was featured in a 2006 episode of “America’s Most Wanted,” the Globe reported at the time.
The gun used to kill Nicasio in 1999 was stolen from a local gun factory by an employee, who then sold the weapon to support a drug habit, according to previous Globe reports. The gun was stolen off an assembly line before it could be stamped with a serial number, the Globe reported.
The gun manufacturer, Kahr Arms, agreed in 2011 to pay $600,000 to the families of Nicasio and the other shooting victim, the Associated Press reported at the time.
The weapon, a loaded 9mm handgun, was found by a 4-year-old child behind an apartment near the crime scene six days after the shooting, the AP reported.