After an outcry from the LGBT community at home and here on the mainland, the government of Puerto Rico has agreed to investigate the murder of gay teen Jorge Mercado as a hate crime. Activists had called on US. Attorney General Eric Holder to intervene if Puerto Rico had refused. Via Michael Lavers:
Puerto Rican authorities have agreed to investigate Jorge Steven López Mercado’s murder as a hate crime after they met with local representatives of the American Civil Liberties Union. Nuevo Dia reported William Ramírez, executive director of the ACLU and the University of Puerto Rico’s Legal Clinic, pointed out to Puerto Rico Department of Justice Secretary Antonio Sagardía the Commonwealth has a history of “not investigating hate crimes cases” like the one he said to which Juan A. Martínez Matos reportedly has confessed. “The ACLU has tried to get the government to accept its responsibility to investigate cases… that are hate crimes, particularly that of young Jorge Steven López Mercado,” Ramírez said in a statement. “We should not be satisfied with the possibility the federal government will do what our government is not interested in doing; which is to protect every citizen.”
I’ll follow this case to its conclusion.