A video has circulated on the internet showing Nigerian immigrant Alika Ogorchukwu being attacked and strangled to death by an Italian man. On July 29, Ogorchukwu (who worked as a street vendor) allegedly asked the suspect Filippo Claudio Giuseppe Ferlazzo and the woman accompanying him for pocket change.
According the victim’s lawyer, Ferlazzo attacked him after he complimented the woman’s looks. Though Ferlazzo was arrested, Italian officials immediately (and predictably) ruled out racism for the attack.
So a Black man is beat to death in broad daylight by a white man and instead of anyone stopping to help, they either record or simply walk by as if it’s not happening? It doesn’t get any more racist—and infuriating—than that.
However, prosecutors confirmed that they did not include any kind of racial motivation in the charge sheet, according to Ferlazzo’s lawyer Roberta Bizzarri. Per police reports, Ferlazzo hit Ogorchukwu with a crutch that the victim used after chasing him down a shopping street. He then beat him with his bare hands and strangled Ogorchukwu to death.
Bizzarri claims that her client suffered from mental illness and shared with reporters that Ferlazzo “gave his version of the facts and said he was sorry.” She also said that the alleged killer insisted “there was no racial element” involved in the attack.
A statement from Nigerian foreign ministry said the government “strongly condemns the gruesome murder of a Nigerian” and asks Nigerians “to exercise restraint as the Law takes its course.”
The country’s embassy, which is located in Rome, has been ordered to “work speedily, together with the relevant Italian authorities, to ensure that justice is served, in order to forestall a repeat of the unfortunate incident.”