http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/05/nyregion/05kill.html October 5, 2006 Womanâ€™s Defiance Led Mugger to Kill Her, Accomplice Testifies By ANEMONA HARTOCOLLIS A teenage mugger took the witness stand yesterday and laid out for a jury the rules of the street that dictated why an actress and playwright on the verge of making it in New York was shot dead, while other mugging victims that night were allowed to live. It wasnâ€™t the color of her skin, or the amount of money in her purse, the mugger said, but the victimâ€™s attitude â€” her insouciance, defiance and disdain that made the muggerâ€™s accomplice shoot the actress, 28-year-old Nicole duFresne, once in the chest, killing her. â€œWhat are you going to do, you going to shoot us? Is that what you wanted?â€ Ms. duFresne demanded, according to Tatiana McDonald, one of the muggers, who testified yesterday in State Supreme Court in Manhattan. As Ms. duFresne shouted those words, she walked up to Rudy Fleming, whom Miss McDonald described as the 19-year-old leader of the pack, and looked him in the eye, Miss McDonald said. Mr. Fleming reacted by pushing Ms. duFresne in the chest with his left hand. Ms. duFresne stumbled backward, then bounced back and shouted her question again: â€œWhat are you going to do, shoot us?â€ Mr. Fleming pushed Ms. duFresne a second time, and when she came at him again, he lifted his right arm and fired one bullet, Miss McDonald said. â€œHe was so mad, he just lift up the gun and shot at her,â€ Miss McDonald said. â€œAfter I saw her grab her chest, I just ran.â€ The prosecutor, Eugene Hurley, asked the witness how close Mr. Fleming was to Ms. duFresne when he shot at her. About two feet away, Miss McDonald replied. â€œIt was pretty close, because he couldnâ€™t even hold up his hand,â€ she said, noting that Mr. Fleming did not have room to stretch out his arm. â€œShe was blocking the gun.â€ Testifying on the fourth day of Mr. Flemingâ€™s murder trial, Miss McDonald admitted that she was part of a group of seven youths that went out after midnight on Jan. 27, 2005, spoiling for a fight and looking for victims. She was the youngest of the group, at 14. Now 16 and still in the sixth grade, she said she agreed to cooperate with prosecutors in return for a promise that if her testimony is truthful, they would recommend that a judge clear her criminal record and consider sentencing her to the 10 months she has already served in jail. The night of the shooting, the seven smoked marijuana in the apartment where two of them lived in the Baruch Houses on the Lower East Side, then went out after midnight to roam the streets, she said. The five young men in the group wanted Miss McDonald and the other girl, Ashley Evans, Mr. Flemingâ€™s girlfriend, â€œto fight whatever girls we see,â€ she said. They spotted a young man wearing a white leather jacket, and Mr. Fleming announced, â€œI like that jacket; Iâ€™m going to get that jacket,â€ Miss McDonald testified. Miss McDonaldâ€™s boyfriend, Kashawn Boyd, hit the young man so hard that Mr. Boydâ€™s hand became swollen, but the young man refused to give up his leather jacket and escaped by running into the street and threatening to call the police, she said. That victim, Adam Chavez, testified on Tuesday. The group then rode the subway to Brooklyn, where they menaced a girl at the Broadway Junction station and a man who scared them away by reaching into his jacket as if he were carrying a gun. Returning to the Lower East Side about 3 a.m., they spotted Ms. duFresne walking with her fiancÃ©, Jeffrey Sparks, and two friends, Scott Nath and Mary Jane Gibson. â€œIâ€™d like to bang on these people right here,â€ Miss McDonald quoted Mr. Fleming as saying when he spotted the two couples walking on Clinton Street, south of Rivington Street. Mr. Fleming hit Mr. Sparks in the eye with his gun, then yanked away Ms. Gibsonâ€™s purse, tossing it to the two girls, who rifled through it, Miss McDonald said. Concerned about her fiancÃ©, Ms. duFresne approached Mr. Sparks and said, â€œLet me see your eye,â€ while lifting his hand, which was covering his injured eye, Miss McDonald said. Then she confronted Mr. Fleming, yelling her challenge, and he shot her, the witness said. â€œDid you see Rudy slip at all?â€ Mr. Hurley, the prosecutor, asked, apparently trying to counter suggestions by Mr. Flemingâ€™s defense lawyer, Anthony Ricco, earlier in the trial that the gun went off accidentally. â€œNo,âMiss McDonald said. â€œDid you see her pushing him at all?â€ Mr. Hurley asked. â€œNo,â€ Miss McDonald said.