Second arrest made in botched gang hit killing of innocent NYC man



A second reputed gang member is under arrest for the botched gang hit of an innocent victim in the Bronx — and he was on probation and in possession of a “large amount” of crack cocaine when he was busted, according to police sources.

Samson Walston, who was on probation until 2026 for first-degree gang assault,  was arrested outside of 2263 Morris Avenue in the Bronx on Sunday morning in connection with the killing of Saikou Koma, 21, on Oct. 24, the sources said.

Walston, AKA Bam Balla, was carrying a satchel that contained 214 vials of crack when he was arrested, the sources said.

He was charged with first-degree manslaughter, murder with intent and two counts of criminal possession of a loaded firearm, court records show.

He was also hit with charges from a non-fatal shooting from Oct. 16, cops said. He was charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, criminal possession of a weapon and reckless endangerment for the shooting in which nobody was injured, cops said.

Saikou Koma
Saikou Koma was 21 when he was killed in what may be a case of mistaken identity.

Walston has been arrested 15 times since 2013, but 13 of those are sealed, the sources said. The charges against him for the open cases were the first-degree gang assault in 2018, criminal possession of a loaded firearm in 2017 and false personation in 2016.

Walston, a member of the 183 Street YG gang, was incarcerated in the city six times, the sources said. His most recent release was on July 16, documents show.

He was believed to be on a bicycle with a group of males looking for a rival when Koma was mistakenly fatally shot. 

Police investigate the murder of Saikou Koma in the Fordham Heights neighborhood of the Bronx.
Police investigate the murder of Saikou Koma in the Fordham Heights neighborhood of the Bronx.
William Miller

The first person busted for shooting Koma in the head was reputed gang member Steven Mendez, 17.

Mendez, who was once busted for allegedly pulling a gun on his own mom, could have been kept behind bars for up to four years after pleading guilty in a violent armed robbery in which a man was shot in the leg in 2020, according to officials and law-enforcement sources.

But the reputed gang member was freed on five years’ probation in May at a judge’s discretion. Koma’s killing may have been a case of mistaken identity fueled by gangbangers out for vengeance, sources said.

Haja Kaira
Saikou Koma’s mother, Haja Kaira is heartbroken over her son’s murder.

Koma’s heartbroken mother told the Post she was seeking justice after her son’s killing.

“This judge let him go, but I’m not letting [it] go,” Haja Kaira said. “My son will get justice. This is crazy.”


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