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Last Updated: Friday, 30 December 2005, 10:18 GMT
Stray bullet kills S Asian expat
Queens borough, NY
The shooting took place in the Queens borough of New York
A Bangladeshi woman who emigrated to the US has been killed by a stray bullet shot through her window.

Selina Akther was shot in the head and died instantly at the window of her fifth-floor apartment in the Queens borough of New York.

Police arrested a US soldier who they said was on leave and had been drinking when he fired shots into the air.

Ms Akther's family said they had been planning a surprise party for her 29th birthday on 31 December.

Ms Akther's husband and two young children were in the flat at the time of the shooting near midnight on Wednesday.


Husband Golam Maola said he was on the telephone to relatives in Bangladesh when he heard two shots being fired and found his wife in a pool of blood.

We came from our country to live life, a better life
Golam Maola, husband

Neighbour Wilma Narciso told the New York Times: "He was screaming really, really badly. He was banging at his door. There was blood on his clothes. I got blood on me. He said, 'My wife is bleeding from her eye'."

Police said they had arrested 23-year-old Private Danny Carpio and would be charging him with manslaughter and criminal possession of a weapon.

Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said: "As a result of his thoughtless action, a young woman is now dead and her two small children must face the difficult and heartbreaking chore of adjusting to life empty of their mother's presence."

Mr Brown said Pte Carpio, who lives nearby, had been drinking before meeting friends outside the apartment complex and shooting into the air.

His relatives told police he had just returned from a Texas military base and was planning a party for Friday to mark his wedding in the summer.

Police Commissioner Raymond W Kelly said: "We believe he fired a gun in the air to celebrate his homecoming with friends in front of the location."

Police said Pte Carpio was co-operating and was "extremely remorseful".

The New York Times said Ms Akther and Mr Maola were born in Chittagong. He came to the US in 1990 and she arrived in 1997.

Mr Maola told the paper: "We came from our country to live life, a better life. She is the best woman in the family. She is a really good woman."


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