The man whose body was found in Sheepshead Bay on Monday with cement around his feet has been identified as Peter Martinez, 28. Police say Martinez is a possible gang member, and the New York Times reports that he was known on the streets as Petey Crack.
Martinez's body surfaced along a shore along the Manhattan Beach campus of Kingsborough Community College on Monday morning, and was first noticed by a college student out for a stroll. Martinez's head and hands were wrapped in duct tape, his torso in plastic bags, and according to the Times, his feet were entombed in a five-gallon bucket of concrete. He was reported missing in February, and his clothes and Virgin Mary back tattoo were still distinguishable when officers fished out his corpse. Police called the death "obviously a homicide."
The Medical Examiner's Office is still trying to determine how he died and how long he might have been in the water. DNAinfo reported, citing unnamed sources, that Martinez was a member of the G-Stone Crips, who are active in East Flatbush and whose members include rapper Bobby Shmurda, currently jailed on gang conspiracy, reckless endangerment, gun, and drug paraphernalia charges. That could not be independently confirmed.
Martinez had been arrested 31 times, according to the Daily News, and was released from state prison in 2013 after serving two years for identity theft, according to prison records.
A source also told DNAinfo that Martinez's body seems to have floated to the surface because the cement job was botched, allowing air bubbles into the mixture. A concrete company owner told the Times that in cold weather the process of getting the cement to harden around someone's feet would take anywhere from 12 hours to a day.
"They could make it wet and make the guy stand in it, or put his legs in and pour the cement around it," said Paul Bartelotti, owner of M&B Concrete in Brooklyn. "He could have been dead and they just stuck his feet in."