Kelvin Martinez is a 15-year-old boy who was charged with first-degree manslaughter for stabbing and killing Ethan Reyes, a 14-year-old aspiring rapper known as Notti Osama, on a subway platform in New York City in July 2022.
However, the charges against Martinez were dropped in October 2022 after prosecutors decided they could not disprove beyond a reasonable doubt that Martinez was acting in self-defense.
This article will explore the details of the stabbing incident, the background of Notti Osama, the reactions and tributes from his family and fans, and the current status of the case.
The Stabbing Incident and Charges
Kelvin Martinez’s Involvement
Martinez and Reyes were allies of competing gangs that had escalations in recent weeks, according to the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office. Martinez entered the railway station to take an uptown train on Saturday afternoon, July 10, 2022, when Reyes and two companions were strolling near 137th Street and Broadway. Reyes and his companions followed Martinez inside the station with a broomstick.
They surrounded him near the north end of the platform, Reyes attacked Martinez with the stick, and Martinez swung a knife at Reyes’ midsection. One of Reyes’ pals struck a sharp weapon at Martinez, and Reyes shoved him over the railroad tracks, landing on his back. Martinez got up and exited the station as Reyes stumbled down the platform and slumped on the stairway. Reyes died shortly after EMS took him to the hospital.
Dropping of Charges
Martinez was detained and interrogated by NYPD and DA officers a few hours later with his mother. He was hospitalized for a back injury and two left hip puncture wounds during the encounter. Police charged him with second-degree murder, but prosecutors reduced it to first-degree manslaughter when Reyes cornered Martinez with a broomstick. On October 28, 2022, prosecutors dropped all charges against Martinez because they could not establish he was defending himself. Martinez also said he was attacked by Reyes’ group in recent weeks.
Who Was Notti Osama?
Ethan Reyes, also known by his rap name Notti Osama, was a 14-year-old boy who had a passion for music and wanted to pursue a career as a rapper. He was born in Brooklyn but moved to Yonkers with his family in June 2022. He attended Lincoln High School in Yonkers and was described by his principal as a “bright young man” who had “a lot of potentials”. He has released several songs on YouTube and SoundCloud, where he has thousands of followers. Some of his songs were “Notti World”, “Notti Gang”, “Notti Story”, and “Notti Freestyle”. He also collaborated with other local artists such as Lil Tjay, Jay Gwuapo, and Smoove’L.
Relationship with Kelvin Martinez
Prosecutors said Reyes and Martinez were friends and members of competing gangs. It is unknown what caused their deadly encounter on July 10, 2022. Some accounts say it was a music or territorial issue, while others say it was personal or random.
Reaction and Tributes
Family’s response to Notti Osama’s death
Reyes’ family was devastated by his death and demanded justice for him. His mother, Jessica Reyes, said that her son was “a good kid” who “loved music” and “didn’t deserve this”. She also said that she forgave Martinez but wanted him to face the consequences of his actions. His father, Edwin Reyes, said that his son was “a star” who “had dreams” and “was going to make it”. He also said that he hoped that Martinez would learn from his mistake and change his life for the better.
Notti Osama’s fans were shocked and saddened by his death and expressed their condolences and support for his family. They also paid tribute to him by listening to his songs, sharing his videos, posting his pictures, writing messages, creating hashtags, making fan art, and holding vigils. Some of his fans said that he was “an inspiration” who “had talent” and “was going to be big”.
Update on the Stabbing Incident
Current status of the case
As of November 2023, the case against Martinez has been dismissed and he is no longer facing any charges for Reyes’ death. He is allowed to live outside New York City at a location known to prosecutors but not identified publicly because of “a significant risk of violent retaliation” against him. He is also scheduled to fight David Miramontes at RCWC on October 29, 2022 in a flyweight bout. He has a 3-2-0 pro MMA record and has won all his fights by knockout.
Further developments or investigations
There are no further developments or investigations regarding the stabbing incident as of November 2023. However, the case could be reopened if new evidence or witnesses emerge that could challenge Martinez’s self-defense claim. The NYPD and the DA’s Office have not commented on whether they are still looking into the circumstances leading up to the fatal stabbing or the possible involvement of other parties.