Unfinished Lives

Remembering LGBT Hate Crime Victims

Arrest Made in Possible Hate Crime Murder in Puerto Rico

Ponce, Puerto Rico – Police arrested a suspect in the latest grisly murder in Puerto Rico over the weekend, according to EDGE Boston’s Michael Lavers.  Luis Díaz Rodríguez, 34, was jailed late Saturday night in connection with the December 16 murder of Fernando Vargas López de Victoria, 35 years of age, in a room in Ponce’s Motel Las Colinas (shown in photo at left).  Investigators reported that the victim, 5’1″ and 230 lbs., was found naked, lying face down.  He had been savagely stabbed 20 times and his throat had been slit.  The pattern of wounds on the victim’s hands and arms is consistent with a person struggling in self-defense.  Police Sergeant Richard Nazario told reporters for El Nuevo Dia that  Díaz Rodríguez and López de Victoria arrived at the hotel on Tuesday, Dec. 15. He said the two men began to smoke crack cocaine inside their room, and the attack took place in the course of “an argument.”  Motel employees,who apparently recognized the victim, said López de Victoria worked for Puerto Rico’s Department of Housing. He was thought to be gay, but there is no confirmation at the time of this report.  Díaz Rodríguez is charged with first degree murder and several weapons crimes, and is being held on $800,000 bond as the investigation continues.  LGBT activist spokesman for the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, Pedro Julio Serrano has called for the case to be treated as an anti-LGBT hate crime murder. “Given that the victim is thought to have arrived at the motel with another man, the brutality of the crime, the hate with which it was committed, we must insist that the authorities investigate this as a hate crime,” he said.

December 22, 2009 - Posted by | anti-LGBT hate crime murder, gay men, Hate Crimes, Latino and Latina Americans, Law and Order, Perpetrators of Hate Crime, Puerto Rico, Social Justice Advocacy, stabbings | , , , , , , , , ,

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