New video footage apparently shows a Bronx bodega owner defending Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz from a group of accused gang members moments before they reportedly stabbed the 15-year-old to death.
Modesto Cruz told WPIX that he panicked on the night and question and didn’t quite know what was going on. He went on to present the network with an additional video that showed him trying to protect Guzman-Feliz and fight off the teen’s attackers as they dragged then hacked him to death using machetes. Cruz claimed he had tried to have the teen hide behind a counter but his attackers saw him.
Cruz said he’s owned his bodega for 18 years and had known Guzman-Feliz since he was a baby, according to WABC.
“When somebody go and jump all over the counter my first reaction was stop it. When he get down again and I recognized him and he came back again, so I tried to hold him I don’t know what’s going on,” he recalled. “And when he told me they’re looking for me, they’re running for me, so I helped him bring him down.”
Cruz also claimed that he called 911 and spent four minutes on the phone with a dispatcher. As CrimeOnline previously reported, earlier footage appeared to show employees pointing a wounded Guzman-Feliz to the door. However, Cruz said the ambulance he called was taking too long and that he was pointing him in the direction of a hospital located a few blocks away.
Video reportedly showed the bloodied teen take his last breaths mere feet away from the hospital. Reports indicated that at least seven men are in custody in connection with Guzman-Feliz’s stabbing death.
“I just feel very, very bad,” Cruz recalled to WPIX. “I do remember his face. He was so scared.”
[Featured image: WPIX video screengrab]