#JusticeForJunior Bronx Bodega Owner Says He Tried to Help Dying Teen
The store owner is telling his side of the story
A Bronx Bodega owner is fighting back against claims that he didn't do enough to help a dying 15-year-old.
The store owner, Modesto Cruz, says that he, in fact, tried to help Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz, the Bronx teenager who was chased down and stabbed to death by a group of gang members, a case that has sparked outrage on social media.
READ: #JusticeForJunior: A Group of Men Fatally Stabbed Bronx Teen With Machete
Cruz says he was closing down when Junior ran in the store, called Cruz and Chiky Grocery. Junior tried to jump over the counter and Cruz stopped him. Then the teen started yelling "They're looking for me!" That's when Cruz let him behind. But the attackers walked in the store and saw Junior and dragged him out.
Surveillance video that Cruz showed PIX11 seems to back up the claim that Cruz tried to help, at that moment. Cruz then said he called 911 at 11:39 pm and was on the phone for four minutes while the operator asked questions.
WATCH:#JusticeForJunior New Footage Shows Bodega Worker Refused to Help Dying Teen
Junior would eventually come back after the attack. He was bloodied. There was social media outrage because in the surveillance video it seems like Cruz kicked the bleeding teen out of the store. But, according to Cruz, he was telling Junior to go to the hospital because the ambulance was taking too long.
Junior would try to go St. Barnabas Hospital. But he collapsed on the street.
Local City Council members and a petition online have called for the store to be shut down because it was “no longer worthy of doing business in NYC.”
Cruz’s lawyer Francisco Serrano asked that people don't make conclusions, telling the Daily News:
In order to close the store there needs to be due process...We're gonna respect the community. We're gonna be talking to the community.