Connect with us

World

Friends mourn ex-con turned caseworker beaten to death by mob of ATV and dirt bike riders

News Agencies

Published

on

Friends of the man recently beaten to death by a crew of ATV and dirt bike riders believe he would have forgiven the very people who killed him in Harlem — and likely would have tried to help them mend their ways — had he recovered.

Arthur Cooke, an ex-con turned case manager for people in trouble with the law, succumbed to his wounds last Friday.

“He might be the one that helped them out of the situation, even in the situation that they did that to him,” his son’s mother, Tamura “Tammy” Locascio, told the Daily News on Thursday. “That’s how much dedicated he was to his job and to helping the community.

“He probably would have sat there and tried to get even less time for them or something.”

As a case manager and court advocate with the nonprofit Exodus Transitional Community’s Alternatives To Incarceration, Cooke used to dress up for court appearances, advocating for others in ways he never advocated for himself.

“I took a plea deal, and he just came to court with me to explain to the DA and the judges why I deserve a second chance,” Jason Fields, an Alternatives To Incarceration client, told The News. “They were just blown away by it. I’m just remembering the suit he was wearing and what he said.”

Fields, 28, was reflecting on the life of his friend and mentor a week after Cooke died from injuries he suffered when a mob of ATV and dirt bike riders attacked him on a Harlem street on Nov. 4.

Cooke, 45, was on his way home from a date with his girlfriend when a clash with one of the riders led to a vicious beatdown that left him in a coma for two weeks before he died.

After the attack, at E. 125th St. near Madison Ave., a nearby homeless man jumped inside the victim’s gray Mercedes-Benz and sped off, police said.

Cooke was left hospitalized for severe injuries to his neck and spine. The stolen car was later recovered on Randalls Island, but neither the attackers nor the car thief have been arrested.

Family held onto hope he would pull through after he showed signs of improvement, but doctors warned them not to forget he was brain-dead.

“He was responding,” said Locascio, 45. “But the doctors think that that was just reflexes because he was brain-dead.”

Cooke was just four blocks from his Harlem home when attacked, and his death was ruled a homicide, according to police.

“Just a lot of pain,” Locascio said of his death. “And I was really hurting. I was just praying that he’d wake up and get off the bed and say everything’s all right.”

Cooke’s friend, Raphael Jefferson, said the victim touched a lot of lives and made a genuine difference in the community.

“If you are part of the problem and someone finally gave you the opportunity and says ‘if you don’t like this, I’m going to give you a chance to do the right thing.’” Jefferson said. “It’s like someone finally wiped your slate clean and finally gave you a chance to do the right thing and really be who you know you are. That’s what Exodus gives us.

“We come here and we’re all castrated from society as being these criminals and things, and then we learn how to harness our powers and do better. And that’s exactly who he was.”

Jefferson said Cooke, who served four years in jail after convictions for assault, robbery and arson in Queens, was committed to turning his life around and helping others do the same.

“That man was suited down Monday through Friday,” Jefferson said. “He always used to say, ‘On my way to court. On my way to court.’ And he would laugh. Because he used to say that in his past life because he had to go fight for his own self. But now he was on his way to go fight for someone else. He was almost a guardian for these guys. He worked a lot.”

As devoted as he was to his Exodus clients, he was even more devoted to his 6-year-old son, friends said.

“He would tell me all the time ‘I’m in love with our son,’” Locascio said. “I’d say, ‘I understand that.’ And he’d say, ‘No, you gotta understand, I am in love with this little boy.’”

Fields said Cooke gave him hope.

“He shared something in group one morning when me and someone else were talking about ending our lives,” Fields said. “He said in his time in prison, he always thought about giving up. But ‘there’s more to life.’ And it took my mind off those suicidal thoughts. Arthur made sure that I knew that there was a light at the end of the tunnel.

“He was really in the streets at one point, and then he made a complete 180 turn. It showed me what a man should be.”

Locascio said she was doing her best to get through Thanksgiving and the holiday season, when Cooke would dress up as the Grinch and entertain their son.

“It’s very trying for me to get through this day,” she said. “Holidays were Arthur’s thing, and he went all-out in celebrating. Every holiday.”

Continue Reading
Advertisement

Breaking News

Advertisement

Editor Pick’s

Latest Entertainment

Entertainment2 hours ago

Chrissy Teigen shares photos from her dinner at the White House: ‘You want to steal but don’t because you want to be invited back’

Chrissy Teigen shares details of her trip to the White House. (Photo: Nathan Howard/Getty Images) Chrissy Teigen tried her very...

Entertainment5 hours ago

Why Nepotism Has Always Been a Hot Topic in Hollywood

They know you know what their parents do. So if they want to do what their parents do—or anything that...

Entertainment16 hours ago

George Clooney says he was ‘objectified’ in early roles

George Clooney walks the red carpet at the Ticket to Paradise premiere at Regency Village Theatre in Los Angeles on...

Entertainment17 hours ago

Oscar Predictions: Best Supporting Actor – Ke Huy Quan Is a Story Worth Honoring This Season

Rank Name Film Distributor 1 Ke Huy Quan “Everything Everywhere All at Once” A24 An aging Chinese immigrant is swept...

Entertainment19 hours ago

Sally Field reveals that Burt Reynolds was her worst onscreen kiss: ‘Just a lot of drooling’

Turns out, Sally Field didn’t exactly have a field day when it came time to kiss her Smokey and the...

Entertainment20 hours ago

New Trailer For Miss Cleo Documentary Hints At ‘Web Of Stories’ Surrounding Her Life

Youree Dell Harris, aka Miss Cleo, is pictured on Feb. 24, 2009, in Lake Worth, Florida. Youree Dell Harris, aka...

Entertainment20 hours ago

Jury begins deliberations in Harvey Weinstein rape trial

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Jurors began deliberating Friday in the Los Angeles rape and sexual assault trial of Harvey Weinstein,...

Entertainment21 hours ago

Man arrested in fatal shooting of Migos rapper Takeoff

HOUSTON (AP) — Police have arrested a 33-year-old man in the fatal shooting of rapper Takeoff, who was killed last...

Latest Sports

Technology Hot News

Is Elon Musk Really Going to Buy Twitter? Is Elon Musk Really Going to Buy Twitter?
Technology1 month ago

Is Elon Musk Really Going to Buy Twitter?

Elon Musk, the owner of the electric car company Tesla, CEO of SpaceX, and the richest man in the world,...

WhatsApp services were affected across Pakistan, restored after 2 hours WhatsApp services were affected across Pakistan, restored after 2 hours
Technology1 month ago

WhatsApp services were affected across Pakistan, restored after 2 hours

WhatsApp services were affected in various countries of the world, including Pakistan, and India due to this users were facing...

Bitcoin vs Litecoin: A guide to understanding cryptocurrencies Bitcoin vs Litecoin: A guide to understanding cryptocurrencies
Technology2 months ago

Bitcoin vs Litecoin: A guide to understanding cryptocurrencies

Cryptocurrencies currently occupy an odd place in society. They are no longer the super niche bizarre currency beloved by tech...

Personal data of people is selling on Google Play and Google Ads Personal data of people is selling on Google Play and Google Ads
Editor Picks3 months ago

Personal data of people are sold on Google Play and Google Ads

It’s been two to three years since Google has been unknowingly hosting multiple apps from malicious actors who sell personal...

Protonmail is down a second time in the past 24 hours Protonmail is down a second time in the past 24 hours
Technology5 months ago

Protonmail is down a second time in the past 24 hours

An end-to-end encrypted email service Protonmail is down a second time in the past 24 hours, netizens reported on social...

What's better for the student: a tablet or a laptop What's better for the student: a tablet or a laptop
Technology6 months ago

What’s better for the student: a tablet or a laptop

Some analysts argue that computers have outlived their usefulness. There is some truth in this: PC and laptop sales are...

Tesla founder Elon Musk holds the Twitter deal temporary Tesla founder Elon Musk holds the Twitter deal temporary
Technology7 months ago

Tesla founder Elon Musk holds the Twitter deal temporary

USA: Elon Musk, the founder of companies like Tesla and SpaceX, can actually buy anything in the world. Last month,...

How Zafar Supari is utilizing his ability on Snapchat? How Zafar Supari is utilizing his ability on Snapchat?
Technology7 months ago

How Zafar Supari is utilizing his ability on Snapchat?

Pakistan: Zafar Supari a public figure, businessman, and social media sensation has crossed one hundred thirty-three thousand 133k subscribers on...