FAJARDO, Puerto Rico – A Puerto Rican man faces murder and other charges for allegedly stabbing a gay volleyball player to death last week.
Primera Hora reported Jesús David Hernández Otero’s family reported him missing on March 18 after he told his sister that he would return home shortly. Surfers at a nearby beach the following day found Hernández’s body with multiple stab wounds.
Authorities on March 19 arrested Neftalí Castillo Cabrera in connection with Hernández’s death.
Police officials told Primera Hora that Castillo attacked Hernández — who had been friends with his alleged killer since childhood and played on the same volleyball team with him — because he was gay. Pedro Julio Serrano of Puerto Rico Para Tod@s, a local LGBT advocacy group, has urged authorities to investigate Hernández’s murder as a hate crime.
“They should not be afraid to bring an aggravating hate crime charge,” Serrano told el Nuevo Día on March 24.
Puerto Rico’s hate crimes law includes sexual orientation and gender identity and expression. Gov. Alejandro García Padilla last May signed into law a bill that bans anti-LGBT discrimination in the U.S. commonwealth.