Menu Close

NYC bodega worker was being choked before he fatally stabbed shoplifter, sources say as prosecutors weigh charges

NYC bodega worker was being choked before he fatally stabbed shoplifter, sources say as prosecutors weigh charges

A Queens bodega worker who fatally stabbed a man during an argument about beer early Tuesday had been getting choked just before he knifed the victim, law enforcement sources said.

The unidentified worker at the Mini Mart on the corner of Queens Boulevard and 64th Road in Rego Park was apparently being choked from behind when he drew the knife, struck his attacker with the butt end and slashed him, sources told The Post.

That story was backed up by a spokesman for the trade group United Bodegas of America, who said at a Wednesday press conference near the crime scene that it was “clear to everyone that this man was defending himself, and his life could have been taken away.”

An unidentified man was fatally stabbed in the chest around 12:30 a.m. in front of the Mini Mart on Queens Boulevard near 65th Road in Rego Park, cops said. Robert Mecea
The deadly stabbing stemmed from a feud over beer, sources said. Robert Mecea

“We believe very strongly that [the worker] was trying to defend his life,” said Fernando Mateo, founder and spokesman of UBA. “He came out to ask for his property back. He didn’t come out with violence, he didn’t come out looking for trouble.”

“It’s quite evident that he was attacked — he was choked, he was being beaten and that’s when he reached for a pocket knife that he had in his pocket,” Mateo continued, though he added that he’s neither seen video of the fight nor spoken to the worker, who hasn’t returned his calls.

“He used it to save his own life,” Mateo added. “It happened because he felt [he was] in imminent danger of losing his life [and] need to defend himself.”

The confrontation erupted at about 12:30 a.m. Tuesday morning when the victim allegedly walked out of the Queens corner store with a beer he hadn’t paid for, cops and sources said.

The worker allegedly followed the man outside, and an argument broke out right in front of the late-night spot.

Fernando Mateo, founder of United Bodegas of America, said the worker stabbed the victim “to save his own life.” New York Post
An employee at the store was taken into custody, sources said. Robert Mecea

After he was stabbed, the victim stumbled down the block, blood pouring from the knife wound near his heart, according to eyewitness Irene Martinez-Schober.

Martinez-Schrober called the cops, then tried to help the wounded man with a two-inch gash in his chest.

The victim was pronounced dead at the Elmhurst Hospital Center, cops said. Robert Mecea

“He fell to the side and just before he fell to the side I put my hand on his tummy to see … It was on the center of his chest,” Martinez-Schober, 40, said through tears. “When the stretcher came, you saw it. It was like you saw his heart.”

She tried to feel his pulse and staunch the bleeding — but the wound, she said, was a “kill shot.”

“He couldn’t talk,” she recalled. “He couldn’t speak.”

Authorities rushed the man to Elmhurst Hospital Center, where he was pronounced dead.

The store employee was taken into custody and released but hasn’t been charged.

A spokesperson for the Queens District Attorney’s Office declined comment, saying the investigation into the deadly clash was ongoing.

Source link

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *