By Alfredo Morales.
“For a mother, the murder of a child is a wound that never heals.”
Three years after the death of 17-year-old Fabian Urbina, allegedly at the hands of a National Guard officer, his mother, Mercedes Barrios de Urbina, is crying out for justice and asking that a crime like her son’s never repeated.
“I pray to God for justice, that never again a Venezuelan get killed for claim his right, and that never again a mother, a father, a brother, have to go through this deep pain that I’ve been through,” said Mrs. Barrios in a video published on social media.
Fabian was killed on June 19, 2017, while participating in a protest in the Altamira distributor in Caracas. A National Guard officer, identified by the Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP) as second Sargent Johan Rojas, allegedly shot at the protesters and mortally wounded Fabian and five other protesters.
On July 3, 2019, after two years of the young man’s murder, and 19 postponements of the preliminary hearings, the 41st Control Court of the Caracas Metropolitan Area brought to trial the second sergeant of the National Guard, as the principal material author of the Urbina’s death.
Ivan Urbina, the father of the late young man, reported that his son’s case had entered a new phase of stagnation.
“No progress has been made since July 3 of last year, when the preliminary hearing, the 20th convocated, took place. At that hearing, we moved on to the trial stage, and the first called of the hearing, which would be the opening of the trial, was set for December 10, 2019, but was postponed, and dated for February 25, but since it was Carnival party, it postponed. Then came the quarantine, and the courts did not work. We haven’t a new date, we are waiting for the courts to start working,” explained Mr. Urbina.
Almost a year after the trial began, the National Guard officer continues held by the General Directorate of Military Counter-Intelligence in Caracas.
The wish of his family is that the officer status changes from a detainee to a convicted person “and pay his sentence as established by law,” added Fabian’s father.