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NYC bodega worker was being choked before he fatally stabbed shoplifter, sources say as prosecutors weigh charges

A Queens bodega worker who fatally stabbed a person throughout an argument about beer early Tuesday had been getting choked simply before he knifed the sufferer, legislation enforcement sources mentioned.

The unidentified worker on the Mini Mart on the nook of Queens Boulevard and 64th Road in Rego Park was apparently being choked from behind when he drew the knife, struck his attacker with the butt finish and slashed him, sources informed The Post.

That story was backed up by a spokesman for the commerce group United Bodegas of America, who mentioned at a Wednesday press convention close to the crime scene that it was “clear to everyone that this man was defending himself, and his life could have been taken away.”

Police are seen at the scene of a fatal stabbing on Queens Blvd. in Queens, Tuesday, May 7, 2024. The stabbing happened in the bodega at 97-02 Queens Blvd. with a blood trail to 97-50 Queens Blvd. where the victim collapsed.
An unidentified man was fatally stabbed within the chest round 12:30 a.m. in entrance of the Mini Mart on Queens Boulevard close to sixty fifth Road in Rego Park, cops mentioned. Robert Mecea
Blood is seen in at the scene of a fatal stabbing on Queens Blvd. in Queens, Tuesday, May 7, 2024.  Blood is in front of 97-50 Queens Blvd where the victim collapsed.  The stabbing happened in the bodega at 97-02 Queens Blvd.
The lethal stabbing stemmed from a feud over beer, sources mentioned. Robert Mecea

“We believe very strongly that [the worker] was trying to defend his life,” mentioned Fernando Mateo, founder and spokesman of UBA. “He came out to ask for his property back. He didn’t come out with violence, he didn’t come out looking for trouble.”

“It’s quite evident that he was attacked — he was choked, he was being beaten and that’s when he reached for a pocket knife that he had in his pocket,” Mateo continued, although he added that he’s neither seen video of the battle nor spoken to the worker, who hasn’t returned his calls.

“He used it to save his own life,” Mateo added. “It happened because he felt [he was] in imminent danger of losing his life [and] need to defend himself.”

The confrontation erupted at about 12:30 a.m. Tuesday morning when the sufferer allegedly walked out of the Queens nook retailer with a beer he hadn’t paid for, cops and sources mentioned.

The worker allegedly adopted the person outdoors, and an argument broke out proper in entrance of the late-night spot.

After he was stabbed, the sufferer stumbled down the block, blood pouring from the knife wound close to his coronary heart, in keeping with eyewitness Irene Martinez-Schober.

Fernando Mateo, founder of United Bodegas of America
Fernando Mateo, founding father of United Bodegas of America, mentioned the worker stabbed the sufferer “to save his own life.” New York Post

Martinez-Schrober referred to as the cops, then tried to assist the wounded man with a two-inch gash in his chest.

“He fell to the side and just before he fell to the side I put my hand on his tummy to see … It was on the center of his chest,” Martinez-Schober, 40, mentioned by means of tears. “When the stretcher came, you saw it. It was like you saw his heart.”

She tried to really feel his pulse and staunch the bleeding — however the wound, she mentioned, was a “kill shot.”

“He couldn’t talk,” she recalled. “He couldn’t speak.”

Police are seen at the scene of a fatal stabbing on Queens Blvd. in Queens, Tuesday, May 7, 2024. The stabbing happened in the bodega at 97-02 Queens Blvd. with a blood trail to 97-50 Queens Blvd. where the victim collapsed.
An worker on the retailer was taken into custody, sources mentioned. Robert Mecea
Police are seen at the scene of a fatal stabbing on Queens Blvd. in Queens, Tuesday, May 7, 2024. The stabbing happened in the bodega at 97-02 Queens Blvd. with a blood trail to 97-50 Queens Blvd. where the victim collapsed.
The sufferer was pronounced useless on the Elmhurst Hospital Center, cops mentioned. Robert Mecea

Authorities rushed the person to Elmhurst Hospital Center, the place he was pronounced useless.

The retailer worker was taken into custody and launched however hasn’t been charged.

A spokesperson for the Queens District Attorney’s Office declined remark, saying the investigation into the lethal conflict was ongoing.

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