A sampling of reactions to the Conroy verdict
"For me as a mother it hurts a lot. . . . May God forgive them for what they've done."
"The hunting season is over, at least for now, . . . We're Spanish, but we're not animals."
- Joselo Lucero, Marcelo Lucero's brother
"We believe he never went there looking to kill. . . . Serious physical injury was intended. Death was the result."
- Michael Engel of Middle Island, juror
"Unfortunately in our system of justice, sometimes young men and women are convicted of crimes they did not commit."
- William Keahon of Hauppauge, Conroy's lawyer
"You performed well. Your decision in this case was not one that was reached lightly."
- State Supreme Court Justice Robert W. Doyle to jurors
"I think that they arrived at a fair verdict. . . . The law protects everyone, no matter whether they are from another country, speak a different language or what their immigration status may be."
"A heinous, reprehensible act was committed on the night of November 8, 2008. It is my hope that the sentence will properly reflect the brutal and blind hatred that was displayed on the night of the murder."
- Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy
"That this was decided as a hate crime was extremely important so that everyone knows it's not going to be tolerated in this community, in this town, in this county."
- Patchogue Mayor Paul Pontieri
"There are no winners in a situation like this. We have seen eight families devastated by this crime. . . . A mother is not going to see her son ever again. Another family is not going to see their son for years. We're here to help and make sure Ecuadoreans have the protection and that their rights are being protected."
- Pablo Calle, representative, the Ecuadorean National Department of the Migrant
"What it says - and this is where Suffolk County has come through - is if you think you're going to get away with this kind of stuff, you're going to be seriously wrong. You're going to be held to serious consequences."
- The Rev. Dwight Wolter, pastor, Congregational Church of Patchogue
"They have extracted a tumor, but the illness, the disease, the cancer of hatred in this community will remain, and it will be the responsibility of the political leaders to begin to extract it."
"Just hours after the news of the crime broke, it became clear that the impetus for this heinous act was nothing less than prejudice, revealing an anti-immigrant sentiment that threatens not only those who speak another language or look differently, but all New Yorkers. Today's verdict makes clear that New York has no tolerance for such intolerance; acts committed in the name of hatred will be fully prosecuted."
- Gov. David A. Paterson
"Some kids are disappointed that some people could even act like this, how kids can do this and not care for other people's feelings."
- Jonathan Smaldone, a junior at Patchogue-Medford High School
"The decision finding Jeffrey Conroy guilty of Marcelo Lucero's killing sends a clear message that hate crimes will not be tolerated in Suffolk County. No human being deserves to be treated the way Marcelo Lucero was. In the memory of Marcelo Lucero, let us come together and work to build a more tolerant society that respects human rights and values all individuals regardless of their race, religion or gender."