CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) – A three-judge federal panel has refused to reinstate a $40 million lawsuit in a 2008 Long Island hate crime killing.
The suit was filed by the family of Marcelo Lucero, who was killed by a group of teenagers who admitted targeting Hispanics.
The Ecuadorean immigrant’s family had appealed last year’s decision by federal Judge Leonard Wexler to throw out the lawsuit. The suit against the Suffolk County and its police department claims authorities failed to prevent the killing.
Wexler said new attorneys hired by the family waited nearly a year to seek an extension to re-file the lawsuit.
The family’s attorney called the decision disappointing, Newsday reported.
Marcelo Lucero, a 37-year-old dry cleaning worker, was walking with a friend near the Patchogue Long Island Rail Road station around midnight in November 2008 when a group of seven teenagers confronted them.
A fight broke out and police said the group of teens shouted racial slurs at the two men before Lucero was fatally stabbed in the chest.
The seven teens were convicted of hate crime-related charges. The teen who actually stabbed Lucero was convicted of manslaughter and was given a 25-year sentence; the others are serving lesser sentences. Most of the seven also admitted participating in prior attacks on Hispanics, including two earlier on the day Lucero was killed.
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