A newly discovered video of a student’s slaying at his Bronx school shows the accused killer provoked the attack, the victim’s mother said Thursday.
Louna Dennis said the cell phone video shows a knife-wielding Abel Cedeno rushed her son, Matthew McCree’s, in an Assembly School for Wildlife Conservation classroom on Sept. 27.
“The video shows him running from outside of the hallway into the classroom from outside the hallway, running wild like the Tasmanian Devil after my son,” Dennis said. “My son was defending himself. Sadly, it didn’t save his life. His friend saw what was going on and tried to protect him.”
Dennis said she received the terrifying video of her son and his friend Ariane Laboy getting stabbed via Facebook Messenger.
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Earlier published videos of the incident appear to show only the second part of the deadly fracas, where Cedeno struggles with Matthew, 15, and his best friend Ariane, 16, as screaming classmates look on in horror.
The video shows a classroom in pandemonium, with a teacher and students trying to break up the fight and contain Cedeno amid bloodcurdling shrieks.
Ariane was critically wounded in the incident but survived.
Cedeno, who is bisexual, has claimed he was mercilessly targeted by bullies at the school for his sexual preference. He told the Daily News in a jailhouse interview that he “snapped” after enduring weeks of anti-gay slurs and other abuse from classmates.
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The teen was initially charged with murder in the gruesome killing, but a grand jury reduced the charge to manslaughter.
Dennis’ lawyer, Sanford Rubenstein, said the clip taken by another student at the so-called “Zoo School” rebuts Cedeno’s self-defense claim.
“A jury will ultimately see this video in its entirety, including the actual stabbing of Matthew McCree by Abel Cedeno,” said Rubenstein. “Not just the part that shows the chaos after the stabbing that is being misrepresented as what happened before.”
Police have said they have no evidence Cedeno was targeted by Matthew and Ariane.
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Dennis insists her son was no bully. She said watching the video broke her heart all over again.
“It’s just so emotional to keep replaying it and going over it,” Dennis said. “We are just trying to rebuild a pick our lives up.”
She said Cedeno deserves a murder charge because the video shows him rushing past a teacher to stab her son and because it took three students to stop him from killing Ariane.
“To me, it’s clear who is the aggressor in this whole thing,” she said. “You can see that it’s intentional what he did.”
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Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña said in December that the city will close the school.
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