A disabled Nigerian vendor is beaten to death in Italy as onlookers record video. Immigration attorney says victim was attacked for telling woman she was beautiful.

A disabled Nigerian man was beaten to death in Italy last week while bystanders stood by and watched.

A viral video shows Filippo Ferlazzo, 32, sitting on top of Alika Ogorchukwu and wrestling with her while the man, who used a crutch to get around, struggled for four minutes to fend him off. Onlookers on the busy street in Civitanova Marche, a coastal town on the Adriatic Sea, took in the incident on Friday, but no one stopped the beating. Police said Ferlazzo grabbed Ogorchukwu’s crutch and knocked him out.

The incident has sparked outrage from political leaders and citizens across Italy, but investigators have stopped calling it a racially motivated crime. Accounts of what led to the attack also differ. Some witnesses say Ferlazzo had trouble with the African immigrant begging for money. An immigration lawyer said the Italian factory worker was angry that Ogorchukwu complimented his girlfriend.

Hundreds of people demonstrated against the brutal killing the following day. Nigerians, including the Ogorchukwu’s wife, walked the same street in Civitanova Marche where the angry stranger took his life. “We want justice, enough racism against black people,” some demonstrators shouted. Others called out the dead man’s name and held up his photo.

“The tragic fact is there were a lot of people around. They filmed and said ‘stop’ but no one moved to separate them,” said Daniel Amanza, who heads the ACSIM immigrant association.

Ogorchukwu, 39, immigrated to Italy about 10 years ago to join his wife Charity Oriachi and the couple had at least one child together. He was hit by a car last year and lost his job as a laborer, so Ogorchukwu started selling goods on the street corner to make ends meet.

Authorities said the Nigerian tried to sell some of his items to Ferlazzo and his girlfriend and when they refused he asked for change. The New York Times reports that Ogorchukwu walked away, but investigator Matteo Lucon Luconi told Sky TG24 that the attacker lashed out after the salesman made “intrusive” requests. He said the witnesses called the police and helped the man after the attacker fled. Authorities located Ferlazzo through street surveillance cameras.

“The attacker went after the victim and first hit him with a crutch. He dropped him on the ground, then ended up causing death by repeatedly hitting him with his bare hands,” the city’s Chief Inspector Fabio Mazza said during a news conference.

However, Amanza told The Associated Press that Ogorchukwu told the attacker’s girlfriend that she was beautiful.

“That compliment killed him,” Amanza said. Ferlazzo also took the victim’s cell phone.

The Marche has reportedly been the scene of further attacks on African immigrants. In February 2018, Luca Traini, an Italian far-right sympathizer, shot dead and wounded six immigrants from Ghana, Mali and Nigeria about 30 kilometers from Civitanova. A Nigerian was killed in 2016 while defending his wife from racial slurs in another nearby town. The couple were awaiting asylum after escaping Boko Haram, an Islamist terrorist group in Nigeria.

“There is rampant racism against us here,” a black protester named Anthony told The Standard Gazette. “Nevertheless, we do the jobs that the Italians no longer want to do.”

Ferlazzo was charged with murder and robbery. The attacker’s lawyer said his client had mental health problems.

“He’s in a state of confusion. He is a boy with mental problems. He has a 100 percent recognized civil disability,” Roberta Bizzarri told La Repubblica. “He has been in support administration for some time.”

https://atlantablackstar.com/2022/08/02/a-disabled-nigerian-vendor-is-beaten-to-death-in-italy-while-onlookers-record-video-immigrant-advocate-says-the-victim-was-attacked-for-complimenting-a-woman/ A disabled Nigerian vendor is beaten to death in Italy as onlookers record video. Immigration attorney says victim was attacked for telling woman she was beautiful.

James Brien

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