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Response From Christopher R. Lynn To Mr. Shant Shahrigian’s report on The Daily News February 16, 2020

Dear Sirs

I read your piece with interest, as I am a long-tenured LGTB HIV activist and an attorney. The Rev. Carmen Hernandez, whom I have never met is quoted in your piece as saying » where are the LGTB people we need to come out?» I QUITE AGREE.

In 2017 Abel Cedeno, a long time bullied Bronx LGTB kid was arrested and charged with murder in the Bronx, I asked the very same question. I took his case from legal aid put him before a Bronx Grand Jury who reduced this charge to manslaughter. Cedeno however, at trial and sentencing was treated by the Bronx DA and Judge as if he committed murder. Gay City News in their front-page editorial September 12, 2019 «Justice Ignored in the Bronx» wrote that the DA and the Judge utterly failed to respect the Grand Jury and instead imposed the harshest jail sentence possible of 14 years. CGN further opined that «it must be noted that among Bronx elected officials, the ONLY ONE who stepped forward prominently to support the right of mercy was the Reverend Ruben Diaz.» Everyone else, including out Councilmember Torres and Rev. Carmen Hernandez, were silent. As Abels’ attorney from the moment I got him out on bail until; his sentence was imposed, I asked the very same question.

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