A man charged for last year’s stabbing death of a 15-year-old New York boy is reportedly in talks with prosecutors about making a plea deal that could spare him from life in prison.
The mother of Lesandro Guzman-Ortiz, Leandra Feliz, told WPIX Tuesday that she’s requested a meeting with Bronx District Attorney Darcel Clark amid news that Jonaiki Martinez Estrella, 24, has offered to plead guilty if he’s guaranteed a 20-year sentence with the possibility of parole.
Estrella is accused of delivering the fatal stab wound to Guzman-Ortiz’s neck during the June 20 recorded attack. Feliz said she’s spoken with the prosecutor about Estrella’s offer—and that she plans to reject it. A source had told the news station last month that any plea deals would have to be approved by the victim’s parents.
“He killed a baby,” Feliz told the outlet. “He can’t be asking whatever he wants. I want life for him with no parole.”
Surveillance cameras filmed a group of men dragging Guzman-Feliz outside a Bronx bodega before attacking and stabbing him. The injured teen was recorded stumbling inside the bodega before exiting and making a run for the hospital. The teen reportedly took his last breaths mere steps away from the emergency room.
Police believe the 15-year-old had been mistaken for a rival gang member. Officials previously debunked unfounded rumors that the 15-year-old was killed due to his resemblance to someone who had appeared in a sex tape.
The grieving mother also took the opportunity to deny claims that Guzman-Feliz was a gang member, as she expected the accusation to come to light a second time during Estrella’s upcoming trial.
Late last month, suspect Jose Muniz’s lawyer suggested that the slain teen had gang ties while cross-examining Bronx Homicide Squad’s Oscar Rosa about comments made by another murder suspect, Diego Suero, 29. According to WPIX, Suero had identified Muniz, 21, as the “head guy” of the “Sure” crew of the Trinitarios gang—leading Muniz’s attorney to claim that Suero was “familiar with” the victim because he was a member of a rival gang.
“He wasn’t no gang member,” Feliz undoubtedly told the news station this week. “Show me the proof! He can’t be talking like this. My son is dead. Do they have proof to show?”
Estrella’s trial is scheduled to begin on April 29. Continuing coverage on Lesandro Guzman-Feliz’s case can be read here.
In addition to Estrella, the following 13 men are being prosecuted in connection with the June 20 slaying:
- Manuel Rivera, 18;
- Jose Muniz, 21;
- Diego Suero, 29;
- Luis A. Cabrarasantos, 25;
- Frederick Then, 20;
- Danilo Payamps Pacheco, 21;
- Danel Fernandez, 21;
- Ronald Urena, 29;
- Santiago Rodriguez, 24;
- Kevin Alvarez, 19;
- Elvin Garcia, 23;
- Jose Taverez, 21;
- and Gabriel Ramirez Concepcion, 26
[Featured Image: Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz/Facebook]