Suspects in immigrant's death charged in prior attacks

The indictments against the Patchogue teens accused of killing an Ecuadorian immigrant in November were unsealed Wednesday, revealing additional charges against the suspects for previous incidents. Court

News 12 Staff

Jan 29, 2009, 12:42 AM

Updated 5,649 days ago

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The indictments against the Patchogue teens accused of killing an Ecuadorian immigrant in November were unsealed Wednesday, revealing additional charges against the suspects for previous incidents.
Court papers show Jeffery Conroy, the alleged ringleader in Marcelo Lucero's alleged murder, and the other teens have attacked a total of nine men, including Lucero, simply because of their ethnicity. Prosecutors say the attacks started in 2007 and that one was more brutal than the next, culminating in Lucero?s death.
"All the defendants participated in what we considered to be a racially driven violent pastime," Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota says.
Five of the teenagers pleaded not guilty Wednesday to assault, gang assault, attempted robbery and other crimes. The two others will be arraigned next week. All seven previously pleaded not guilty to hate crime and other charges related to Lucero?s death. Conroy is charged with murder as a hate crime.
The lawyer for Christopher Overton, one of the accused, says prosecutors are piling on charges, ?just trying to clear every unsolved crime involving a Hispanic.?
Latino Justice representative Jose Perez commends Suffolk?s police work since Lucero?s death but says the case shows an epidemic of hate crime against Latinos on Long Island.
AP wire reports contributed to this article.


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