PHILADELPHIA — A Falls man wanted for murder has waived extradition from Pennsylvania and is expected back in a Niagara County courtroom later this week.
Appearing in a Philadelphia courtroom on Monday, Juan Ubiles, 38, waived his right to an extradition hearing, admitting to a judge that he was the person named in a New York state arrest warrant issued in connection with an indictment handed up by a Niagara County grand jury. That indictment, which is currently sealed, is expected to charge Ubiles with murder and weapons counts in the slaying of Gregory Vincent.
A U.S. Marshals task force in Philadelphia, acting on a tip from the marshals’ Western New York Violent Felony Fugitive Task Force, apprehended Ubiles without incident on Sept. 12. Ubiles had been the subject of an intensive manhunt in connection with the June 19 murder of Vincent.
The Western New York task force had conducted a series of searches for Ubiles in the Rochester area in the days immediately after Vincent’s slaying without success. And the local Crime Stoppers program posted a reward of up to $2,000 for information leading to his “arrest or indictment.
Ubiles is accused of gunning down Vincent at around 11:38 a.m. on June 19 in the 2000 block of 18th Street. Falls Police patrol officers responded to a report of “a person shot” near the intersection of 18th Street and Niagara Avenue.
When they arrived, police said they found Vincent, 44, lying on the apron of a driveway and suffering from multiple gunshot wounds to his chest. Witnesses reported hearing three gunshots and then discovering the victim.
Vincent was rushed to Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center where he was pronounced dead.
Detectives have not yet commented on what may have triggered the shooting, though investigators have said that Ubiles and Vincent were “known to each other.” Crime Scene Unit investigators recovered a number of spent shell casings, lying in the street near a corner store not far from where the victim was found.
In the hours after the shooting, members of the Falls Police Emergency Response Team, along with marshals’ task force agents, conducted searches of homes in the 1800 block of Niagara Avenue and the 1900 block of Falls Street in their hunt for Ubiles. Those searches failed to find the suspect.
Ubiles is no stranger to Falls Police investigators. He has a previous weapons related conviction for shooting-up a home on Michigan Avenue in August 2010.
The then 29-year-old Ubiles pleaded guilty, in a deal with prosecutors, to a charge of attempted second-degree criminal possession of a weapon in that case. He admitted that he was carrying a loaded .40-caliber handgun with him, when a home in the 1300 block of Michigan Avenue was hit with multiple rounds of gunfire on Aug. 30, 2010.
Detectives said at the time that Ubiles drove up to the home in a minivan, while children and a woman were sitting on the front porch, and began shooting.
“(A man Ubiles was targeting) was on his porch with his two children and his girlfriend,” then Falls Detective Lt. Michael Trane said. “(Ubiles) got out of his van and started shooting at (the victim). He fired several shots, then returned to his vehicle.”
Neither the intended target nor his girlfriend nor the children were struck by the gunfire. Trane said the victim then jumped into his own car and began searching for Ubiles.
“He found (Ubiles’) van in the alley in the 2200 block between Pierce and Willow (avenues) and began following it,” Trane said. “The van was heading east toward Hyde Park Boulevard and when Ubiles saw the victim following him, he turned off the alley and drove between two houses.”
Then, in a scene reminiscent of a Hollywood action movie, Ubiles’ van side-swiped one home, causing minor damage and then drove out into the 2200 block of Pierce Avenue, while the victim of the incident continued to drive eastbound down the alley.
“As the victim came out of the alley, he saw the van at a stop sign at Pierce (Avenue) and 24th (Street) and he headed toward it,” Trane said. “Ubiles got out of his van and pointed his gun toward the victim and, in an effort to avoid being shot, (the victim) rammed Ubiles’ van with his car.”
The impact of the crash propelled both vehicles up onto a nearby lawn. Trane said Ubiles yelled some additional threats at his victim and then ran east down Pierce Avenue.
Witnesses said Ubiles had a gun in his hand as he fled. The target of the shooting incident later told detectives he had no idea why Ubiles was shooting at him.