Celebrity’s murder blamed on revenge

Gerardo Cruz, made news when he photographed and posted a shot of a man also taking a photo of the backside and legs of a woman as she strolled on the downtown pedestrian walkway.

That raised a ruckus even though the man was not doing anything illegal. Cruz became a celebrity.

Then Cruz made unexpected more headlines when he was knifed a few days later in San Sebastián. The wound eventually proved fatal.

The rumor mill quickly put the two incidents together and suggested that the 22-year-old baker was killed over the photo he posted.

The man who appeared to be fascinated by the legs and rear end of a pretty woman declared his innocence. He turned out to be a Ministerio de Hacienda employee, and investigators cleared him quickly.

Still Cruz was converted into a type of hero by those who decried street harassment of women.

Investigators proved Tuesday that they had not dropped the matter. They detained four persons and accused two women as being the intellectual authors of the murder. They said the motive was a busted romance.

In addition to a 41-year-old and 19-year-old women in Guadalupe, agents also detained a man in San Francisco de Dos Ríos and one more in Alajuelita. Another Alajuelita man is a fugitive, they said.

Investigators said that Cruz had been involved with the 41 year old. They said the two women prevailed upon the Dos Ríos man to arrange the killing, and the pair from Alajuelita, both convicted felons, did the crime.

The women are accused of paying for the crime and also in enticing Cruz to a meeting at a park in San Sebastián where he was the victim of a knifing. Walter Espinosa, the director of the Judicial Investigating Organization, said that the women lured Cruz there on the pretext of yet another television interview.

A surveillance camera shot of Cruz and of one of the murder suspects was key to solving the crime. That video generated multiple responses from the public.

Cruz was stabbed the night of Oct. 7 but did not die until Nov. 19. He is survived by a live-in companion and a child.

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