Carer ‘burned alive’ after reporting death threats against her and disabled boy

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The mother and carer of a severe autistic 11-year-old boy was burned to death after previously cataloguing violent threats made towards her.

Luz Raquel Padilla Gutierrez, 35, from the Mexican city of Zapopan, was brutally attacked on July 16 and died of her injuries three days later in hospital.

Her attackers had doused her with alcohol before setting her alight, fatally burning her.

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Witnesses said they saw four men and one woman involved in the horrifying attack, with the assailants fleeing the scene afterwards.

According to Proceso, they claimed one of the attackers was her ex-partner, although sources close to the dead woman suggest the assault was perpetrated by an angry neighbour, who had complained of the noises made by her disabled son.

Luiz Raquel was rushed to hospital following the attack with third-degree burns, but she succumbed to her wounds a few days later.

She had documented several threats made by a neighbour in her apartment building, in the run-up to her death, and had posted photographs on social media of threatening messages spray painted on the walls of the building.

One read: “I am going to burn you alive”, and another penned: “You are going to die, lesbian”.

She also wrote on Twitter on May 17 that her neighbour had attacked her with bleach, plus she was suffering daily threats of violence from him.

According to a statement by the Jalisco State Prosecutor’s office, an investigation was opened.

It said the Ministerio Público, the police body tasked with protecting witnesses, had provided her with protective measures, but this is contradicted by a statement left by an activist group she was a part of, which claimed her pleas were rejected.

“How long will I need to live with fear that something will happen to me or my family, my aggressor still walks around the city, threatening to do harm”, she wrote on social media.

She played an active part of YoCuido Mexico, set up for families caring for those with disabilities, and they released a statement saying: “We demand clarification and punishment of those responsible for such an atrocious act and punishment of those responsible.

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“She should not have died. Her femicide is a crime of the state and impunity of the Jalisco government. She was not only a mother, she was a caring activist, demanding and doing that the government refuses to do.”

A follower on Twitter added: “We do not want minutes of silence, we demand justice from the Jalisco government and prosecutor's office. It is for her, her little son and for all.”

The Jalisco State Prosecutor’s Office is currently investigating the crime as a femicide, of which there were 1,004 in Mexico, although it is believed there were many more.


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