Rudy Fleming, a 19 year-old who has been serving parole for previous weapons charges, was charged with first-degree and second-degree murder, as well as robbery and criminal posession, in the murder of Brooklyn actress-playwright Nicole duFrense. Police have also charged two others in connection to a robbery earlier on the Lower East last Thursday morning. A number of police tips helped the NYPD find the individuals involved with the crime, but it turns out that a brother and sister in the group that had approached duFresne and her friends told their father that their cousin, Fleming, had killed a woman during a robbery. Servano Simmon, Fleming's uncle and godfather, had been letting Fleming stay at the Barush House projects on the Lower East Side. Simmon said:

I tried to help him — and look what he did to those poor people. This has taken a toll on me. How would you feel if you had someone staying at your house and he killed someone?

...It's not fair to the people, and it's not fair to me. I don't have enough money to buy a decent pair of pants right now, much less have the money to get them out. All I have to say is, these kids did what they did. I don't know anything. I wish I could change the whole situation, but I can't.

Simmon says he told his children to go to the police, but police say that tips came from others who heard those involved talking about the crime. The police have been calling the earlier robbery and duFresne's murder "crimes of opportunity" - prompted only by running into the targets. Other police sources say that Fleming hit his head, spit and tore at his clothes in order to appear "crazy," perhaps in a bid for an insanity defense; he also allegedly "whined" while questioned and appear to be asleep when arragined.

The NY Times and Daily News noted that Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said duFresne's intervention in the robbery shouldn't be faulted: "Regardless of what the victim said or did not say, the person responsible for her death is the one who pulled the trigger." That's true, but it definitely makes you think twice. Commissioner Kelly did add, "If you're in a situation when someone is pointing a weapon at you, I think it's best to comply with the directions of that individual."