CONCOURSE, the Bronx — Two teens allegedly sliced off a livery cab driver’s right thumb while he was defending three young passengers in his car last Sunday.
Those two teens, Kenneth Guzman and Juan Carlos Sanchez, have been charged with assault in the attack on Richard de Leon.
The judge released one of the teens too quickly and on too low a bail, according to the head of the New York State Federation of Taxi Drivers.
“The biggest crime in this case was committed by the judge who released one of these guys on $200 bail after they slashed three or four people and could have killed someone,” Fernando Mateo told PIX11.
The assault on the driver and the passenger began outside of a bodega on the Grand Concourse when police say the two teens first slashed a bodega worker, who then called 911. Police say the two teens jumped into an occupied livery cab with three young girls inside. And the driver, in defending the passengers, lost his thumb.
Matteo says de Leon, a 48-year-old father of four, has not been able to drive and support his family since the attack.
“He’s very depressed. He’s from one doctor to another, the finger doesn’t stop bleeding,” Mateo translated for the driver. “It’s traumatizing. He’s missing a limb,” Mateo added.
Also upsetting to the livery driver and Fernando Mateo was how one of the teens apparently boasted on Facebook about how quickly he was released on bail.
“He’s laughing at the justice system. He’s laughing at the victim,” Mateo said. “It something we don’t understand.”
A GoFundMe has been set up to help de Leon and his family.