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Puerto Rican Teen Brutally Slain in Alleged Hate Crime

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jorge2The body of a nineteen year-old boy was found decapitated, dismembered, and partially burnt in the Puerto Rican city of Cayey on Friday in what some suspect is an anti-gay bias crime.

The Puerto Rico-based newspaper Primera Hora reported on Tuesday that a suspect has been arrested and two vehicles have been seized for investigation in the case.

Friends grew concerned after the teen, Jorge Steven López, failed to meet them at a local club.

A Puerto Rican investigator, Angel Rodriguez, drew stern criticism from LGBT advocates after he implied that López perhaps deserved his brutal fate because of López’s so-called “lifestyle.”

“When these type of people get into this and go out into the streets like this, they know this can happen to them,” Rodriguez said in a statement.

Rodriguez has since been removed from the case.

The LGBT publication Edge reported on Monday that the FBI announced that the bureau will claim jurisdiction over the case if local investigators conclude that López’s murder is, in fact, a hate motivated crime.

President Barack Obama signed groundbreaking federal hate-crimes legislation just last month. That legislation prohibits hate-motivated violence on the basis of sexual orientation, gender, and gender identity.

GLAAD will continue to monitor the media’s coverage of this gruesome crime. Updates can be found on GLAADblog.org

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