Emotional finish at ‘Junior’ closing arguments; jury to deliberate Thursday

Posted: Updated:
THE BRONX -

It was an emotional finish to closing arguments Tuesday in the 'Junior' murder trial.

Some jurors broke down in tears after prosecutor Morgan Dolan spoke in the Bronx County Hall of Justice courtroom. She included a video compilation of the pursuit and stabbing of Lesandro “Junior” Guzman Feliz, a Belmont teen who was attacked by accused gang members last June.

MORE: Anthony Carlo's Notes for Junior Trial Day 17

"Their intent...when you thrust the knife over and over again, and when you hack the machete over and over again, is the intent to kill," she told the jury.

Of the 14 suspects, five are currently on trial for first-degree murder charges. The other nine are facing second-degree murder charges.

MORE: Justice for Junior: Recapping week 5 of murder trial

Jonaiki Martinez Estrella's lawyer argued that his client had a lot to prove as one of the only probationary Trinitarios at the scene. The lawyer argued that Estrella cut Junior's neck with the intent to harm, not kill, Junior – saying that he feared discipline by superiors if he did not follow orders.

The defense called for a mistrial, but the judge denied that motion.

Dolan brought up one of Estrella's recorded phone calls in prison, in which he alleges his own wife called him a murderer. Estrella also disclosing that he dropped his weapon down a sewer in one of the calls.

Dolan used all the evidence at her disposal, including autopsy photos, to argue all of the defendants shared the same intent not only to kill Junior, but also to torture him in the process. Both are elements of first-degree murder.

Jury deliberations are set to begin on Thursday.

MORE: Judge may not let ‘Junior’s’ mother back in court due to outbursts
MORE: Defendant in 'Junior' trial sick; key witness testimony postponed
MORE: Defense hammers key witness on role in 'Junior' death
MORE: Prosecution rests in Junior case after showing graphic autopsy photo

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."