Man who killed FDNY firefighter Faizal Coto sentenced

A man convicted of murder for killing an off-duty FDNY firefighter in a road rage incident in December 2018 was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison on Friday.

Authorities say that on December 9, 2018, Joseph Desmond, 33, and the victim, Faizal Coto, 33, got into a "minor fender bender" while driving on the Belt Parkway in Brooklyn.

Both men pulled over to the side of the road where Desmond immediately got out of his car, approached Coto, and struck him in the head with a blunt object before getting back in his car and driving away. 

Coto, who suffered profound skull fractures, collapsed on the ground next to his car. He was found by a passerby who called 911. EMS responded and took him to Coney Island Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

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Coto had been stationed at Engine 245 in Coney Island. 

Desmond was arrested the next day. 

"This defendant’s vicious response to a minor fender bender robbed a close family of a loved one and a firefighter community of a brave and treasured brother," District Attorney Eric Gonzalez said. "Our hearts continue to be with Mr. Coto’s relatives, friends and coworkers as they grieve this unspeakable loss, and I hope today’s sentence helps bring some sense of solace knowing that this defendant has been held accountable."