HomeTop StoriesJacob Mejia charged with stabbing Luis Pena, a Bronx man suspected of...

Jacob Mejia charged with stabbing Luis Pena, a Bronx man suspected of stealing tires from his SUV

MINEOLA, NY Jacob Mejia was charged Friday with the death by knife of Luis Pena, a Bronx man suspected of stealing tires from Mejia’s vehicle.

Mejia, 28, is charged with the murder of Pena, 22, who detectives say stole tires from Mejia’s Toyota Highlander, which was parked next to Mejia’s home on Jericho Turnpike in Bellerose Village on Long Island on May 13.

“When this happened, he went out and went too far. He stabbed him several times. Those stab wounds caused Luis Pena’s death,” said Det. Captain Steve Fitzpatrick, Commander of the Nassau County Police Department.

Neighbors said they heard a commotion and saw Mejia outside around 1:30 am. One said Mejia told her that he looked out his back window and saw three men toward his car.

Detectives said Mejia went outside with a kitchen knife to confront the men.

“Mr. Mejia came up from the back and the last person to try to get into the car he stabbed several times in the back,” Fitzpatrick said.

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Jessica Rivero, Mejia’s neighbor, said the suspects tried to break into her sister’s car. In Spanish, Rivero’s sister told us that Mejia got one tape back before the suspects got into their car and started firing.

“There was evidence at the scene. It’s either a bullet gun or a low caliber weapon,” Fitzpatrick said.

Detectives said the other two suspects took Pena to a Bronx hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Pena’s family appeared visibly distraught in court. Mejia has left without speaking after being charged with manslaughter and first-degree assault.

“Burglary, you really have the right to use deadly force to protect your home. If you are dealing with property lying on the street and preventing theft from being committed, you may use physical force, but not deadly physical force” said former assistant district attorney of Nassau County, Daniel Johnston.

Mejia is being held on $1 million bond. If convicted, he could face up to 25 years behind bars.

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