In the wake of one of most famous murder cases in the recent history of Puerto Rico, the Pablo Casellas case brings hope to the citizens of Puerto Rico.
I must admit that I was not following the case very closely, I don’t have cable, and as a full time employee with young kids, I really don’t have a lot of time to be watching TV, I’d rather spend time with my wife and kids.
So anyway, back to the Casellas case.
Pablo Casellas is a man who was accused and recently convicted of first degree murder for allegedly killing his wife with a gunshot to the head. It was a very big case as this man, Pablo Casellas, is the son of a U.S. district (and millionaire) judge. This case was investigated thoroughly and lots of people thought that when his father (the judge) paid the 4 million dollar bail set for Pablo Casellas after his arrest, money would rule once again.
To the surprise of many, and a sigh of relief to the family of the woman who was murdered, Pablo Casellas was convicted of first degree murder, and that sent shock waves through the island of Puerto Rico. I’m talking that the #CasoCasellas made the number 1 spot in the twitter worldwide trending rankings yesterday! #AnaCacho was in the number 3 spot, more on that later.
But why? Why are people so happy that someone got convicted of murder? What about the couple’s children? Anybody thought of them? They lost their mother to murder and now their father to prison! Meanwhile everybody in the island is talking and showing memes of their father all over the internet.
I’ll tell you one reason why.
Because the people of Puerto Rico feel that justice prevailed. You see, when you live in Puerto Rico, you see murder cases in the news every single day, you see sometimes people get away with crimes that they appear to have committed. The people of Puerto Rico simply LOVE their little island, this is a very proud nation, and recently they are feeling that the quality of life is decreasing to new lows, that they have to live in fear, that there are so many violent crimes to which no one appears to be convicted of. Of course, when you see in the news the really high profile cases, like this one of Pablo Casellas and another one still pending after the death of then 8-year old boy Lorenzo (reason for the #AnaCacho being third in twitter yesterday), there seems to be a lot of money involved, and people get scared.
Scared that if the high profile cases you see in the news every day for months or years have a “not-guilty” verdict, then others are going to replicate and commit even more crimes since hey, that person was not guilty, maybe I can get away with it! So people are scared, and rightfully so, it just seems like all these people who get away with it, have a lot of money, and they pay someone.
So the guilty verdict showed the people of Puerto Rico that there is still justice in this island, that money does not control everything, that you just can’t get away with something like that in this island.
And the people needed that.
The people feel that they have had it! They need their nation back. They need to live in the paradise that is Puerto Rico, where kids used to play outside in the wonderful weather we have. That people can drive to and from work without having to worry if there will be a car to car shooting. The people of Puerto Rico need to feel that if you commit a crime, you will be convicted, regardless of who you are and regardless of who your daddy is or the amount of money you have. So you better not!
This is a beautiful island, full of beautiful people with a wonderful heart. People that have been sad lately with all the violent crimes that are going on. Because of the Pablo Casellas conviction, there’s the feeling of a small victory, a step in the right direction. Now, people are asking in even louder tone, for the conviction of Ana Cacho, the mother of 8-year old Lorenzo who died at his house one night after being mortally wounded to his head, apparently stabbed. No one was present except the mother and his 2 sisters, ages 5 and 13. This was back in March of 2010, today, almost 4 years later, there has not even been an arrest related to this crime. People want someone to be held responsible, now.
Even though cases like these happen all the time in all parts of the world, there are a select few cases that shape the way people see things and guide their focus either towards optimism or pessimism. The Pablo Casellas case is one of those. Whether you agree with the conviction or not, whether you agree or not that people should be celebrating the fact that someone is going to prison for many years is not the point. The point is that when the people of a nation feel that the authorities that are there to protect them and to maintain order actually follow through, that they can and will prosecute people who commit these terrible crimes, then the people feel like they are in a good and safe place. That their paradise is not all lost, and maybe just maybe, there is light at the end of the tunnel, things may get better, slowly but surely to a day in which we will feel that our children or even our grandchildren will grow up in a place where they can be happy, safe, free, and proud to call HOME.
And that my friend, is reason to celebrate.