By JODI-ANN MALARBE & DANIELLE KOGAN
Nine pieces. Nine body parts is what the defendant reduced the victim to,” a prosecutor said during one of many graphic and gory details peppered through the opening statements in the trial of a reputed pimp accused of murdering his ex-girlfriend and dismembering her body.
Assistant DA Sabeeha Madni also cited a trash company employee, Rasheen Stanley, who told investigators he’d been contacted by Moses at the time of the incident urging him to help him dump the body.
In their correspondence, Stanley said Moses told him, “You better help me or you are going to end up like her,” Madni said.
Madni also alleged Foster was in an abusive relationship with Moses, based on photo evidence and messages found on some of her phones at 185 Rasmuth St., the address where she lived with Moses, and the site where Foster’s remains were found. The messages indicate that she was scared to come home, and the photos show Foster’s body was covered in bruises allegedly made by her boyfriend.
The defendant’s lawyers did not deny that Moses dismembered the body, but said there was no evidence indicating that he killed her. The defense also claims Foster ultimately died due to unknown brain trauma, despite search records in the defendant’s phone revealing searches for cleaning agents, eye dilation, and brain trauma.
“You don’t have to like him… you don’t have to like his lifestyle. I am asking you to listen…Mr.Moses cut up the body, he had no motive to kill his money maker,” the defense said in their opening statement.
Among the most gruesome testimony on the witness stand came from the trash company employees who found the body. Vicente Figuoroa, a payloader, initially found Foster’s leg and torso. Jesse Mercado, who worked the floor the night before, was alerted by his colleagues about body parts found in the garbage.
“After we checked we realized it was a human being,” said Figuoroa, who testified through an interpreter.
The victim’s younger sister Shaniqua Figueroa, 33, on the stand identified the defendant as her sister’s boyfriend. Figueroa also verified the defendant’s address as Foster’s residence and said she’d last seen her sister in July 2016. Because of the numerous phones Foster kept for sex work, the two sisters often communicated via Facebook Messenger.
The last message Foster sent to her younger sister was January 12, 2017- the day of the alleged murder. Since that message was sent, the younger sister recalled trying to contact her between 4 and 5 times and failing to get a reply.
Somorie “Sugar Bear” Moses was arrested in January 2017, after cops found known sex worker Leondra Foster’s hands, feet, and head refrigerted in his home. Currently charged with second-degree murder, Moses was initially tied to the case after bags of trashed evidence were found in a privately owned garbage transfer station in the Bronx and tracked back to his apartment in Flatbush. Cops also found cut up carpet stained with blood, bleach stains on the floor, a box cutter wrapped in paper, and boxes with blood in a hamper during the investigation.
Moses was registered as a Level 2 sex offender in 2006 after he was busted trying to prostitute an underage girl. During their relationship, he also acted as a solicitor for Foster, a known sex worker. In the months leading up to the murder, the defendant was abusive in his relationship with Foster, according to the victim’s father, Kenneth. Kenneth previously accused Moses of also being a sadist, “with a thing against women.”