This, this is what happens when you allow hatred of one segment of our population to grow and fester like a cancer. Marcello Lucero, 37, was stabbed to death Saturday, November 9th. His crime, you may ask? He was Hispanic. Seven teenagers, living in a county where the County Executive, Steven Levy, is known for pushing tough anti illegal immigration enforcement, even to the extent of raiding apartment buildings, demanding documentation from the inhabitants, all of whom were Latino. Apparently these teenage boys were looking for any Hispanic to attack, and Marcello was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. The reality is, when you have elected officials, standing silently by, while hatred and racism grow towards one group of people, violence is bound to happen. What is worse though, when I think about it, is that I can only imagine that Suffolk County mirrored PWC in many ways, in ways that refused to acknowledge there was a growing dislike towards the Latino community. However, we had Greg’s blog to document the growing hatred, hatred that Corey and John, to this day, continue to deny knowing about or admitting that there is a division growing in our county. Geez, you even have Corey saying, out loud, “did you ask the Spanish speaker if they were legal citizens”, when he was inquiring about the citizen satisfaction survey.

NEW YORK (CNN) — A Latino group Tuesday expressed outrage over the slaying of an Ecuadoran man, allegedly at the hands of seven teenagers in what police are calling a hate crime.

The teens’ parents bear some of the blame, along with community leaders who have created an inhospitable environment for immigrants, Fernando Fernando Mateo, founder of Hispanics Across America, said at a news conference.

“We understand that some may not welcome us in their neighborhoods, but killing us will not drive us away,” Mateo said. “Those that hate us allow us to cut their lawns, build their homes, paint their homes, cook for them, serve their children — and yet they teach them hate.”

Marcello Lucero, 37, was walking to a friend’s apartment in Patchogue, New York, when he was attacked late Saturday, police said. He was stabbed in the chest and died of his injuries. A friend walking with Lucero was not injured.

The seven teens were trying “to find Latinos and to assault them,” said Suffolk County Police Detective Lt. Jack Fitzpatrick. “That was what they went out to do that night, and that’s exactly what they did do. … They were actively seeking victims.”

Jeffrey Conroy, 17, faces charges of first-degree manslaughter as a hate crime in the attack, police said. He and the other six — Jordan Dasch, Anthony Hartford, Nicholas Hausch, Christopher Overton, Jose Pacheco and Kevin Shea — also face charges of first-degree gang assault.

20 thoughts on “Man killed, Saturday, simply for being Hispanic….another tragedy

  1. Moon-howler

    Is this where I go around and start shrieking ‘Rule of Law?’ I mean, I do live in PWC.

    Regardless of constant protest, the black velvets and the nativist BOCS members have yet to differentiate between legal and illegal immigrants.

    Didn’t one esteemed black velvet grouse and grumble and rant about his/her illegal next door neighbors? The velvet left out the fact that these ‘illegals’ were from Puerto Rico. What’s wrong with this picture?

  2. hello

    This is a very sad story and all of those who did this or participated in it should be punished to the fullest extent of the law. However, your description of this county and what happened (with the building inspection) isn’t exactly accurate:

    “even to the extent of raiding apartment buildings, demanding documentation from the inhabitants, all of whom were Latino”

    The article that you linked clearly states that this wasn’t a “raid”, it was a building inspection “to identify and crack down on unsafe and overcrowded living conditions within Southampton Town.”. Also, not ALL of the tenants were Latino, most of them, not ALL of them. I don’t really agree with how it was done but you make it seem like IEC knocked doors down and took people away and that isn’t what happened. If your going to link a story like this then at least describe it correctly without your obvious slant on it. Again, I don’t agree with how this was conducted but nobody was taken into ICE custody or detained, it was not a raid.

    You also say “this is what happens when you allow hatred of one segment of our population to grow and fester like a cancer”. The article said this of Steven Levy: “he has won broad public approval and national attention for his aggressive campaign against illegal immigration”. I didn’t see any mention of his hatred of Latinos, only his campaign against illegal immigration. Again, your clearing trying to link illegal immigration policy to hatred of Hispanics and I think that’s wrong.

    I suppose I’m failing to see how immigration policy influenced this murder. This seems like it was a couple of racist idiots murdering someone because of their race which I find disgusting no matter the race of the victim or the assailant.

  3. Cindy B

    Here’s an article from the News & Messenger that was published on September 30, 2008 under the headline “Prince William Police Earn Achievement Award.” Don’t forget
    Serafin Alvarez Negrete’s death, and the positive response from police and the community back in 2006:

    Between 2005 and 2006, Prince William County became part of what the Police Executive Research Forum called a “gathering storm” of violent crime in the United States.

    What emerged from the surge in crime was a trend of Hispanic immigrants becoming targets for street robberies that, police say, were motivated by opportunity and the perception that victims would be alone and carrying lots of cash.

    So, while the overall crime rate in the county was on the decline in 2006, robberies rose by about 40 percent from 250 to 351.

    How the Prince William County Police Department handled the troubling trend and the results it yielded earned police an Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties.

    What it did was launch the robbery suppression initiative in 2006.

    It was innovative, cost-effective and “it worked,” said Jacqueline Byers, director of research at NACo.

    The award, which recognizes unique and innovative county programs, was presented to the police department at the Prince William Board of County Supervisors meeting last week.

    The program was launched in 2006 in response to a two-year surge in robberies and the slaying of Serafin Alvarez Negrete, a Mexican immigrant who was robbed and shot to death in what police said was a crime of opportu-nity.

    Detectives in the department’s street crimes unit, which heads the program, narrowed in on the areas that were most problematic, conducted multiple undercover operations and took proactive measures.

    “We’re certainly honored and proud to have received the award, but I would be remiss in [not] saying that there was a whole bunch of people involved in the success of this program,” said 1st Sgt. Dan Hess, who supervised the street crimes unit until six months ago when he moved to the vice narcotics division.

    “What made it successful, ultimately, was the full understanding of what the problem was and a very quick and decisive plan of action to address the violent spike in robberies,” Hess said, crediting the work of police Chief Charlie T. Deane.

    On the application for an achievement award, Byers said the applicant has to give an abstract of the program, what brought about the program, a description of it, what the cost was and what the results were.

    Byers said the police department “promoted a dialogue with the community,” was able to do it at no extra cost by pulling in resources from other areas of the department and reprioritizing, and got good results.

    “That’s everything we look for,” she said.

    The cost and results of the initiative were both important elements, Byers said, because it determined whether it could be easily replicated in another community.

    In the county police department’s case, statistics were provided showing a significant decrease of 22 percent—or a drop from 351 in 2006 to 272 in 2007—for all robberies, Byers said.

    The Washington, D.C.-based NACo received more than 600 applications, of which about 300 received an achieve-ment award, she said, adding that it is a non-competitive awards program and each application is judged on its own merits.

    Staff writer Elisa Glushefski can be reached at 703-878-8062.

  4. NotGregLetiecq

    I am saddened and disgusted by this of course. But during an optimistic time in our history, I would prefer to focus on the bright side, which is this: with the millions of homes that Lou Dobbs, Rush Limbaugh, and other hate-monger media politicians have been saturating daily with hate propaganda directed at Latinos, it is a testament to the great progress we’ve made as a nation that we haven’t had MORE hate crime murders.

    The fact that there have been so few goes to show that hate politics is just not going to work in today’s America. For Stewart-Letiecq-Stirrup, it was close but no cigar. I am proud that this has not happened in PWC in spite of the hate trio’s best efforts.

  5. hello

    Hi Cindy, unfortunately this continues to happen (from Tuesday):

    Two men robbed at gunpoint after cashing paychecks
    Two men were robbed at gunpoint after cashing their paychecks in Woodbridge.
    The victims, two Woodbridge men, were robbed in the 14700 block of Farm Creek Drive on Friday around 4:40 p.m.
    One of the suspects was armed with a handgun, both of them ordered the men to give up the money or they would kill them, Officer Erika Hernandez, Prince William police spokeswoman, said in a released statement.
    The first suspect was described as a black man, approximately 5 feet 8 inches tall, 170 pounds, with black hair and wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and blue jeans. The second suspect, described as a black man, was approximately 5 feet 4 inches tall, 150 pounds, black hair, wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and black pants.

    Where I live (on rt. 1) it seems as if there is a checks cashing place every couple hundred yards or so. Just drive down rt. 1 between the VRE and Opitz, Ill bet you lose count half way thru. Some gas stations even advertise that they cash checks! Unfortunately these places become hunting grounds for thieves looking to rob people they know have cash on them. What better place to stake out than a place people walk out of with large amounts of cash. I think the county should shut most of these places down because it would be easier to patrol two or three rather than 50 or 100 of them.

  6. hello

    Hi Elena, if your going to post stories like this one why do you never post stories like this: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/11/10/AR2008111001898.html

    It’s about an innocent 14 year old honor student being shot and killed (two other teens also shot but they survived) by an illegal immigrant and MS-13 gang member while just sitting on a bus. The worst part of the whole story is that the guy that shot and killed this kid was in jail just one month earlier on a weapons charge but they never checked his immigration status. Had they checked it the honor student would be alive today, however, they didn’t so his parents are now attending his funeral instead.

    If I were this kids parents I would sue the pants off of Montgomery County and the state of MD for having this guy in custody and letting him go allowing him to murder their son for no reason at all.

  7. We all have seen what a failed attempt at immigration reform looks like. This administrations end game was to ramp up raids to satisfy the base. The result however, helped move the fastest growing voting bloc to turn out in record numbers.

    Now what?

    How do we get immigration reform back onto the table?

    As part of its First 100 Days strategy, the Fair Immigration Reform Movement and the National Capital Immigrant Coalition is putting together a mass mobilization on the National Mall on January 21st, 2008. President-Elect Obama promised us reform in his first year and he recognized that immigration raids were terrorizing families. The success of Obama’s campaign has helped to crack justice’s golden door open and now the responsibility falls on our shoulders to make sure we force the door open.

    Why January 21st?

    This date was chosen because of its proximity to the inauguration date (1 day later). There will be a tremendous number of power brokers, political figures and congressional staffers in Washington DC to celebrate the inauguration. Media coverage will be superfluous to cover this historic event. It is an ideal time to celebrate Obama’s historic moment and at the same time remind him of the promises, the injustices, and the hateful anti-family climate we are in. It is an ideal time to introduce the tone of what the pro-immigrant agenda should include in this first year of his presidency

    “They are counting on us to stop the hateful rhetoric filling our airwaves, and rise above the fear, and rise above the demagoguery, and finally enact comprehensive immigration reform.”
    -Senator Barack Obama

    That same hateful rhetoric recently claimed a life in New York and it also claimed a life in Woodbridge last year. Hate crimes are up 20+ % since 2006 against Latinos according to the FBI. Hate groups are using this issue to increase their membership and everyday groups with ties to supremacists are further gaining mainstream acceptance as fair and balanced. How much more are we willing to put up with, with our arms crossed?

    Consider participating in the Virginia Mobilizing effort for the 21st of Jan. Please contact Esteban Garces at 703-684-5697 x309 to find out more. If you would like to join our next meeting, please make plans to be at the Legal Aid Justice Center on Tuesday, Nov. 18 at 4PM (6066 Leesburg Pike, Suite 520, Falls Church, VA 22041).

  8. Moon-howler

    I don’t know of anyone who thinks gangs or gang membership is ok. Gangs have been a scourge on our country for centuries. What is there new to say? Jail them, deport them if they are here illegally. No one defends or excuses them, to my knowledge.

    On the other hand, the boy mentioned in Elena’s article was targeted and killed because he was Latino. That makes it a hate crime.

  9. hello

    Hi Moon, I’m not trying to compare the two crimes at all… the point is that this site picks and chooses which crimes are news worthy. Yes, the crime described in this particular thread is both disturbing and disgusting. But at the same time you never see one, not a single one, on this site in which the crime (in this case the murder of an innocent 14 year old honor student) is ever mentioned when it is 100% preventable and committed by an illegal immigrant (no matter where the immigrant is from).

    The crime I linked would have never happened if they would have checked the man’s immigration status when he was arrested on weapons violations a month earlier. To me that is news worthy because it points out how valuable the 287g program can be. If you want to point out hate crimes why stop at one committed on a person of Hispanic heritage. There are hate crimes just about every day in the US. Also, if your going to do a story on a crime such as this at least describe your links correctly.

  10. FormerCoMEmployee

    Both sites do the same thing. They pick and choose the articles that fit their agenda. The difference is this, the other site uses articles where ILLEGAL aliens kill, rape or rob other people. If those people weren’t here this crime would not have to be reported. On this site, you chose an article that is a shame and the people should be put away for life, but we have to deal with people like this because they are American citizens. Lets be real and honest here!

  11. Elena

    Hi Hello,
    Hmmm, interesting hypothesis. What would your reaction be if I posted stories about the crimes of some other ethnic group, and given that crime rate, attempted to draw a correlation between their ethnicity and their propensity for crime? It isn’t just that Greg talks about illegal immigrants and crime, he ALWAYS finds articles that focuses on Latino’s. There is a difference between reporting crime that will mistakenly give the impression that a specific group of people is more likely to commit crime and reporting a hate crime directed at an individual based soley on their gender, race, or ethnicity. Maybe you should read the Bell Curve, basically a book based on Eugenics, that attempts to genentically determine who will be a more productive ethnic group in society. It is racism couched in statistics and “science”. Also, the article did describe these checks as something similar to “raids”. I have lived apartments, I was never asked to prove my citizenship at an unannounced knock on my door. I am focusing on hate crimes commited on Latino’s because the FBI reports them as being on the rise. It is clear to me that the rising level of hate rhetoric directed at Latino’s is in direct correlation with an increased number of hate crimes directed at Latino’s.

  12. hello

    Hi Elean, Ill try to be as articulate as I can given that I just got back from cocktails (many and I’ve got to wake up at 5AM tomorrow! F@@K) with a buddy who just got back from Iraq… Touché, while you make a valid point I still would like to see threads which talk about the positive aspects of the 287g program rather than any and all issues with crimes against Hispanics. Please, do not get me wrong, I’m not diminishing this (or any like this) story in any way what-so-ever. Having said that, your threads deal with one and only one type of story when there are many others. Some diversity would be nice for a change!

    Also, can you please check out and respond to my comments in the “Citivas Institute Interview: John Stirrup” thread. Apparently nobody (except for my girl Moon) wants to touch it with a ten foot pole. I’m afraid if this type of behaviour is aloud to fester the results could be detrimental to this site and it’s goal.

    I believer You, Moon, and Alanna owe a response to this kind of trash. Think about it, if the shoe was on the other foot how would you feel (rhetorical question BTW, I know how you would fee)? When posting here I have always tried my very best to not react in a negative manner even when I have had ample reason to. To stand up and say something in the face of comments (to which I’ve pointed out) would speak VOLUMES for this sites reputation! Please (grow a pair… kidding, kind-of) and say something! If not, your silence would speak volumes.

  13. hello

    Sorry, my last sentence should have said “your silence would be deafening!”….! Shit, I need to sleep. 5 and a half hours of sleep sucks when you have to wake up and are expected be on point… 🙁

  14. hello,

    Your mindless support of policies like 287g reflect your profound ignorance about the principles upon which our republic was founded. Your policies only serve to weaken the concept that our justice system is supposed to be founded upon: innocent until proven guilty.

    Of course, we all know this is often times suspended when the accused is non-white. The anti-immigrant resolution is stark proof of that.

  15. hello, 14. November 2008, 8:56

    F U Makie, really… your support of such things shows your true colors.
    _____________________________________

    Hello, I think your complaints are a little unfounded considering your response here. I personally don’t care who says what so long as it doesn’t promote things like calling Hispanics “vermin” and endorsing discrimination. I don’t put up with racism. Criticizing your POV isn’t a sin, no matter how much it might annoy. People do it to me all the time. Oh well. Part of blogging.

  16. hello

    Uh, PAP, you do put up with racism if you don’t condemn derogatory comments about “white” people.

    Mackie, okay, can you look the mother of the 14 year old honor student in the face and tell her that 287g (which would have saved her sons life) is worthless? Sorry, but the only mindless and profound ignorance is coming from you. You equate detaining criminal illegal immigrants to ethnic cleansing for Christ sake!

  17. El Guapo

    45 years ago after the Birmingham church bombing that killed four little girls, AJC editorialist Gene Patterson wrote the following words:

    “A Negro mother wept in the street Sunday morning in front of a Baptist Church in Birmingham. In her hand she held a shoe, one shoe, from the foot of her dead child. We hold that shoe with her.

    Every one of us in the white South holds that small shoe in his hand.

    It is too late to blame the sick criminals who handled the dynamite. The FBI and the police can deal with that kind. The charge against them is simple. They killed four children.

    Only we can trace the truth, Southerner – you and I. We broke those children’s bodies.

    We watched the stage set without staying it. We listened to the prologue unbestirred. We saw the curtain opening with disinterest. We have heard the play.

    We – who go on electing politicians who heat the kettles of hate.

    We – who raise no hand to silence the mean and little men who have their nigger jokes.

    We – who stand aside in imagined rectitude and let the mad dogs that run in every society slide their leashes from our hand, and spring.

    We – the heirs of a proud South, who protest its worth and demand it recognition – we are the ones who have ducked the difficult, skirted the uncomfortable, caviled at the challenge, resented the necessary, rationalized the unacceptable, and created the day surely when these children would die.

    This is no time to load our anguish onto the murderous scapegoat who set the cap in dynamite of our own manufacture.

    He didn’t know any better.

    Somewhere in the dim and fevered recess of an evil mind he feels right now that he has been a hero. He is only guilty of murder. He thinks he has pleased us.

    We of the white South who know better are the ones who must take a harsher judgment.

    We, who know better, created a climate for child-killing by those who don’t.

    We hold that shoe in our hand, Southerner. We hold that shoe in our hand, Southerner. Let us see it straight, and look at the blood on it. Let us compare it with the unworthy speeches of Southern public men who have traduced the Negro; match it with the spectacle of shrilling children whose parents and teachers turned them free to spit epithets at small huddles of Negro school children for a week before this Sunday in Birmingham; hold up the shoe and look beyond it to the state house in Montgomery where the official attitudes of Alabama have been spoken in heat and anger.

    Let us not lay the blame on some brutal fool who didn’t know.

    We know better. We created the day. We bear the judgment. May God have mercy on the poor South that has so been led. May what has happened hasten the day when the good South, which does live and has great being, will rise to this challenge of racial understanding and common humanity, and in the full power of its unasserted courage, assert itself.

    The Sunday school play at Birmingham is ended. With a weeping Negro mother, we stand in the bitter smoke and hold a shoe. If our South is ever to be what we wish it to be, we will plant a flower of nobler resolve for the South now upon these four small graves that we dug.”

    Basically Patterson is blaming the deaths on those that spread the hatred as well as those that tolerated the hatred. One positive thing that I see now is that I think we as a nation has learned. At least a lot of us have. Hatred spread by Gheen and his ilk is not tolerated by a lot of people. That’s little comfort to the family of this man.

  18. Elena

    Welcome January 21mobilization. What are some of the solutions you would support?

  19. Elena

    Hello,
    Glad your buddy is back safely. Sounds like you will be nursing a hangover. Don’t trust the old wives tales of the “dog that bit you” cure!

    We’ll see what I can do about posting a thread on 287G.

  20. Moon-howler

    Hello, it is probably good that there are 2 different quarters representing 2 different sides. Wouldn’t it be deceptive if the only blog you read was about nasty illegal immigrants commiting crimes? What if you never saw where an illegal immigrant, or immigrant was a victim of a crime? It would leave you pretty one sided.

    One of the things I pride this blog on is that the administrators might pull stories that represent our point of view (although the 3 of us each have a different point of view) we do present it as honestly as we can. We do not distort or leave out facts knowingly to stir up our readers, like some other local blogs have been known to do.

    M-H

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