NEW YORK (FOX5NY.COM) - Hundreds of people have signed a petition calling on New York City officials to pay tribute to a murdered Bronx teenager with police honors at his funeral.
Lesandro Guzman-Feliz, 15, was a member of the NYPD's Police Explorers program. His family said he wanted to become a police officer.
Last week, several men attacked Guzman-Feliz inside a bodega in the Bronx. They pulled him outside and beat and stabbed him. Bleeding from a neck wound, Guzman-Feliz ran to a nearby hospital where he died.
The petition, written in the form of a resolution, states in part: "RESOLVED, that we, the undersigned, residents of the City of New York, as well as people of goodwill everywhere, hereby request that, if it be in keeping with the wishes of his family, Lesandro Guzman-Feliz be laid to rest with all the honors and ceremony that the New York City Police Department can avail a civilian; including, but not limited to, the honor of draping his casket with the NYPD green and white flag; a salute by a contingent of uniformed officers; a drum corps; and such other honors and respects as Commissioner O'Neill deems legal and appropriate for the circumstances."
The petition is addressed to Mayor Bill de Blasio, Public Advocate Leticia James, Council Speaker Corey Johnson, the City Council, and NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill.
Several police officials, including Commissioner O'Neill, paid their respects at the wake for Guzman-Feliz but the department has not announced what, if any, role the NYPD will play at the funeral.
Authorities have eight men in custody in connection with the case.