Murder of Daniel Zamudio
3 August 1987|
|Died||27 March 2012
Daniel Mauricio Zamudio Vera (3 August 1987 – 27 March 2012) has become a symbol against homophobic violence in Chile after his 2012 murder. On 2 March 2012, Zamudio, a Chilean gay man, was beaten and tortured for several hours in the San Borja Park in downtown Santiago. The four attackers, allegedly linked to a neo-Nazi gang, attacked him after learning he was gay. His death and all the media attention contributed to accelerating legislation against discrimination, as well as opening new doors of acceptance and tolerance of differences in the conservative country.
According to Zamudio's parents, Zamudio was subjected to violence in the past because of his sexual orientation. On 2 March 2012, Zamudio was attacked and severely beaten for six hours until he was unconscious. He was taken to the hospital Santiago with traumatic brain injury, a broken leg and cuts on his stomach from broken bottles similar to swastikas. In different parts of the body were found cigarette burns. From his injuries, the young man died 25 days later in the hospital of Santiago.
After Zamudio's death, Chilean president Sebastián Piñera urged parliament to speed up the adoption of the law on hate crimes, which had been on the shelf for over seven years. The law would ban discrimination based "on race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, gender, appearance, or handicap." Adoption of the act was actively opposed by several churches which argued that the law could set a precedent for the legalization of same-sex marriage. In July 2012 the law was passed, signed by the President and entered into force.
On 17 October 2013, all four men were found guilty of first degree murder. Judge Juan Carlos Urrutia pronounced that Patricio Ahumada Garay, Alejandro Angulo Tapia, Raul Lopez Fuentes and Fabian Mora Mora were guilty of a crime of "extreme cruelty" and "total disrespect for human life." On 28 October, Ahumada was sentenced to life imprisonment, Angulo and Lopez were sentenced to 15 years, and Mora, the youngest of the four, received 7 years because of his cooperation with investigators and his lack of prior convictions.
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