Cops are hoping a $12,000 reward will shake loose some information in the flagging murder investigation of a 60-year-old E. 86th Street resident shot dead during a home invasion on July 29 — a slaying that, so far, remains a mystery.
“From what I know [detectives] have no leads,” Desiree Blackett, daughter of victim Stevenson Blackett, told us Monday as she and her family made funeral arrangements for the beloved plumber shot to death in the basement of his home between Avenue K and Church Lane, right across the street from the Canarsie Cemetery. “I still don’t understand why all this happened, and I’m not going to find any closure until I do.”
But detectives seem just as baffled as Blackett’s grief-stricken children.
Police said the thieves crept into the basement of the home just before 1:15 am and bound the 60-year-old before putting two bullets in his head. Family members said Blackett liked to sleep in the basement in the summer since it was cooler.
A few minutes later, Blackett’s wife Brenda, 59, investigated some noises downstairs and found him dead on the couch — his hands tied in front of him.
Sources said the proud father and grandfather may have struggled with the thieves, since one of the bullets went wild and hit a kitchen cabinet.
They cut their way through a screen door, but may have used a key to get past the main basement door. Cops are also working on the theory that Blackett let the two men inside before they attacked him.
Blackett ran a plumbing business in the Bronx, but never kept his cash at home, family members told police.
Faced with very few clues, Desiree believes her father was targeted, but has no idea why.
“Nothing was taken from the house and he still had everything on him, so I don’t think it was a robbery,” she said. “If this was over something he said or something personal, I couldn’t imagine what it would be.”
If his killers knew Blackett, Desiree believes they never would have pulled the trigger.
“He was a very giving and gracious man,” she remembered fondly. “Since this has happened, we’ve had people approach us who we didn’t know he knew and tell us how loving and helpful he was.”
Cops are asking anyone with information regarding this incident to come forward. Calls can be made to either the 69th Precinct Detective squad at (718) 257-6315 or the NYPD CrimeStoppers hotline at (800) 577-TIPS. All calls will be kept confidential.