The murder of a 15-year-old outside a Bronx bodega at the hands of eight apparent gang members is now prompting an internal NYPD investigation.
The NY Post reports the police department is "probing why two cops didn’t render any apparent aid to Lesandro 'Junior' Guzman-Feliz as he bled to death on a sidewalk." On Wednesday, June 20, the teen was dragged from the Cruz and Chiky grocery on the corner of East 183rd Street and Bathgate Avenue, and then attacked by a group who wielded machetes. Bleeding from the gash in his neck, he died after walking towards St. Barnabas Hospital a few blocks away. These events were captured on surveillance videos.
In another vdeo circulating on social media, a woman and others are seen trying to help, while two police officers stand by doing nothing. The videos caption reads, "officers from the 46Pct was just standing around and did not commence CPR or try to pick the kid up and rush" him inside.
Rap star Cardi B was also critical of the police response:
#justiceforjunior 🇩🇴R.I.P. .These Bronx streets are ruthless .What piss me off the most is that these BX cops be harassing the shit outta people then they see a boy bleeding to death and ask what happen ?“uuuummmmmmmm😤😤😤 How bout you call the ambulance like ya be calling for back up when ya see nikkas smoking in front of a building !!!!! People be like”call the police!” Call the police!!” But for what the operators be asking you questions for like 4 minutes on the phone with an attitude and the cops come maaa lateeee.
NYPD spokesman Phil Walzak told the Post, "The Bronx Borough command is reviewing the response."
This comes as the New York City Police Foundation announced a new scholarship to honor Lesandro. He had been part of a community policing program, NYPD Explorers, at school and aspired to be a police detective. According to a press release, "The scholarship will provide two NYPD Explorer high school graduates up to $5,000 each in reimbursement of tuition and school supplies upon enrollment in an accredited school for the fall semester."
Police Commissioner James O'Neil said, "NYPD Explorers come from the communities in which they volunteer and learn about the importance of higher education, self-discipline in reaching their goals, and the rewards of a career in law enforcement. There is no better way to honor a young man whose stated dream was to become one of the greatest detectives in the world than by establishing a memorial scholarship in his honor."
Eight men have been arrested for their involvement in the murder. It's believed that the suspects are part of the Trinitarios, a notoriously violent gang, and that Lesandro was the victim of a mistaken identity revenge plot.