Defense team in first ‘Junior’ murder case seeks to delay trial

NEW YORK — Defense attorneys representing five men accused of murder in the first degree in the savage, June 2018 slaying of 15-year-old Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz outside a Bronx bodega planned to file a motion this week seeking a delay in the trial.

A source familiar with the motion said it will cite prejudicial, pre-trial publicity—and reference the dozens of social media sites devoted to the case, many of them on Instagram, along with multiple broadcast and online news specials that have focused on the killing. A total of 14 suspects tied to the Trinitarios gang have been charged in the murder.

Pre-trial hearings for five suspects charged with murder in the first degree are supposed to start Tuesday, Jan. 22. Elvin Garcia, Jonaiki Martinez Estrella, Jose Muniz, Manuel Rivera and Antonio Rodriguez Hernandez  Santiago are accused of using the knives and a machete that inflicted lethal stab wounds to Guzman-Feliz.

Police said the mob mistakenly thought Junior was a member of a rival set. A new documentary about the case is also in the works.

One of the defendants recently retained a new attorney, and some of the others will tell the judge they haven’t received all the evidentiary material they’re entitled to, like the written autopsy report and DNA results on some of the cars that were part of the convoy that chased Junior for blocks last June 20.

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