This Sunday marks one year of assassination of Samuel Luisthe 24-year-old who died on July 3, 2021 after a brutal beating on the promenade of A Coruña at the exit of an entertainment venue.
A crime that provoked a wave of indignation at the suspicion that its origin was in a homophobic aggression, something that will have to be elucidated in the oral trial which is still pending due to procedural issues but which seems closer after the latest judicial advances.
Seven people were arrested in the weeks following the crime, which took place in the early hours of July 2 to 3 last year, when a group attacked the young man at the exit of a local next to the Riazor beach. This was confirmed by the National Police after reconstruct in detail that nighttaking into account the data from the security cameras, the mobile phones of those investigated and the testimonies of that day.
Thus, the investigators were able to determine that the group met after the attack in another part of the city to talk about what had happened, although some of the messages on social networks were deleted for the detainees. Precisely this point has delayed the case, since the Investigating Court number 8 of A Coruña had to turn to the US court to retrieve those messages, a request that was eventually granted.
This same week the data has been sent to the National Police for analysis and preparation of a final report to the court that, probably, will serve to finish off the instruction, waiting for what the parties allege before the opening of the oral trial.
Five of the seven arrested, to the bench
Five of the seven detainees will sit on the bench, since two of them were minors at the time of the events and they were already prosecuted by the juvenile court of A Coruña, where they declared themselves perpetrators of a crime of murder and were sentenced to three and a half years of internment.
Three of the detainees remain in preventive detention after the events and two others, a man and a woman, are free, required to appear in court.
It will be in the oral trial where these five people have to sit before a popular jury composed of nine members and there one of the main questions of the case will be determined: if it is a homophobic crime.
During the investigation, indications have appeared, related to comments by some of the defendants about their hatred of homosexuals, which point to this, but the aggravating factor of homophobia will have to be demonstrated and told with at least seven votes among the nine jurors for the court to consider proven.
Icon in the LGTBI + fight
While the trial is not being held, Samuel Luiz has already become an icon of the LGTBI + fight and this weekend vigils have been held in his memory and rallies throughout Spain, especially in A Coruña, at the point where he was murdered .
It already happened after the crime, when the streets and squares of Spain were filled with protesters against “hate and violence” due to Samuel’s death and other homophobic attacks, becoming a symbol against LGTBIphobia.
The KifKif association, which promotes the rights of migrant LGTBI people, has asked that this July 3 be declared National Day Against Hate Crimes for LGBTIphobia. According to this association “designating a national date that marks a day to remember the criminal aggression against LGTBI people is a much-needed form of awareness given the increase in these crimes in our country in recent years.”