3 New Jersey teenagers charged with videotaped immigrant death
SUMMIT, N.J. — Dusk fell around Salvadoran immigrant Abelino Mazaniego as he sat on a bench in an upscale New York suburb after finishing his restaurant shift. As night encroached, so did a group of teenagers, including one with a cell phone video camera at the ready.
Then, authorities say, they beat him unconscious, with the camera rolling.
Days later, the 47-year-old father of four was dead — but not before the video had been circulated among teens in Summit, N.J., authorities say. And not before a nurse in the emergency room where he was taken the night of July 17 was accused of pilfering hundreds from his wallet.
The attacks on Mazaniego’s body and dignity resulted in days of escalating court actions that culminated Tuesday in murder charges against three young men, ages 17, 18 and 19. A fourth teenager thought to have videotaped the attack hasn’t been charged, but authorities weren’t divulging details on the teen’s involvement or potential culpability.
In Summit on Tuesday evening, a young girl sobbed and clutched the waist of a woman as they stood with others in front of a shrine of sunflowers, candles, notes and a photo of Mazaniego that had been placed on the bench where he was attacked. A woman with red-rimmed eyes said she was Mazaniego’s wife of 29 years, and the rest were family members. She declined to give her name, saying she was too scared.