A little over three years after one of the owners of the beloved Bensonhurst pizzeria L&B Spumoni Gardens was gunned down in front of his home, a Brooklyn jury found a man guilty of the murder.
Andres Fernandez was convicted of second-degree murder and second-degree criminal possession, according to the New York Post. He faces 25 years in prison.
Authorities say it was a botched robbery attempt. Louis Barbati, the owner of L&B Spumoni Gardens, was making his way home from the restaurant on 86th Street and was shot as he exited his car in front of his house on 12th Avenue. He was carrying a bag with a little over $15,000 in cash when he was shot, but Fernandez fled the scene without taking the money.
Officials considered the possibility that it was a mob killing, but ruled it out by looking at surveillance footage and cellphone records. Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez said evidence showed that Fernandez was hanging out in front of the restaurant the day Barbati was killed, and was then seen parking and exiting his car close to Barbati’s home. The murder itself was not captured by security cameras.
Fernandez will be sentenced on January 8 next year.
Family-owned L&B Spumoni Gardens opened 80 years ago and is known for its Sicilian square slices. It’s one of the most famous pizza restaurants in the city, and still well-loved.