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Mexican mother of autistic boy dies after being set on fire

#Mexican #mother #autistic #boy #dies #set #fire

A Mexican activist and mother of an autistic child has died after being set on fire, authorities said, sparking protests, condemnations and calls for justice on Thursday.

Luz Raquel Padilla, 35, was doused with alcohol by three men and a woman and set alight in a park in Zapopan, Jalisco state, prosecutor Luis Joaquin Mendez said, citing witnesses.

Padilla, a member of the I Care Mexico group, died Tuesday in a hospital after suffering burns on 90 percent of her body, authorities said.

The case is being investigated as a possible femicide, prosecutors said.

One of Padilla’s neighbors, Sergio Ismael “N,” was arrested for causing injuries, making threats and committing crimes against a person’s dignity in connection with previous incidents, Mendez said.

He has not been charged with femicide for the time being and was not present at the time of Saturday’s attack, according to witnesses, prosecutors said.

Padilla had accused the man in May of writing threats and graffiti with messages like “I will burn you alive” on the walls of the building where they lived.

“How long will I have to live in fear that something might happen to me and my family,” she wrote.

Padilla had also taken to social media to complain about her neighbor’s behavior, such as listening to loud music, which she said had affected her son’s health.

Years earlier, she had also been a victim of abuse from her ex-partner.

– ‘Justice for Luz’ –

Dozens of women demonstrated in front of the Zapopan police station on Thursday, accusing the authorities of inaction and indifference.

“Justice for Luz and justice for her son!” urged Guadalupe Ortega, 62, a member of the Insurgent Women’s Network, a group of caregivers for people with special needs.

Mexican authorities need to be “more sensitive” to the plight of women like Padilla and their grieving relatives, she added.

“Yesterday everyone was devastated by the pain of losing Luz and the governor (of Jalisco) was celebrating a birthday,” Ortega said.

Friends and family carrying flowers and purple balloons accompanied Padilla’s coffin during a wake where the priest called for an end to violence against women.

According to official figures, an average of 10 women are murdered every day in Mexico.

Many of these cases bear the hallmarks of gender-based violence.

“We condemn the murder of #Care activist Luz Raquel Padilla in #Jalisco and all forms of violence against those defending women’s human rights and fighting against gender-based violence,” UN Women Mexico wrote on Twitter.

Padilla’s death came despite living under protective measures.

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said the case reflected a “loss of values” that was “promoted in the neoliberal era,” referring to the period before he took office.

“It’s a dehumanizing model that inspires hate, resentment and frustration,” he added.

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#Mexican #mother #autistic #boy #dies #set #fire

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