Cousin charged in teen's death

August 14, 2008 11:08:10 AM PDT
The cousin of a teenager who was shot in the head and killed in Far Rockaway has been charged in her death.Police do not believe that Felix Cruz meant to harm or kill his cousin. Still, police say his actions led to the unnecessary death of an 18-year-old girl, and that's why he's charged with a number of serious crimes.

A family is destroyed after a night of accidental bloodshed. Thursday, as one of the Cruz' dear friends looked on, police stood guard over a small gun they say Felix Cruz discarded after he unintentionally shot his 18-year-old cousin Veronica Cruz.

"She was visiting here, she lives in Boston, she came down to visit, that's all I can say," the victim's aunt, Mayda Cruz, said. "She was a wonderful girl. Just don't play with guns, they can hurt."

Felix's family had just left for a vacation in Puerto Rico. They rushed home today and Veronica's family arrived from Boston. The Cruz' are very close, friends say, and Felix's mother is not well.

"I don't think she can handle this. I don't think i can handle to see her. They're very tight. Very, very tight,"said Marisol Villabicieneio.

Police are investigating the circumstances surrounding the shooting. They don't know if Felix Cruz was playing with the gun, or cleaning it. All they know is that he had the gun and whatever he did with it resulted in Veronica's death.

He's charged with manslaughter, evidence tampering, criminal possession of a weapon and criminally negligent homicide.

Stay tuned with Eyewitness News and for additional information on this developing story.

STORY BY: Eyewitness News reporter Jamie Roth

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