28th anniversary of Romero assassination
Today is the 28th anniversary of the slaying of Archbishop Oscar Romero. After 28 years, the murder remains a glaring example of impunity -- the failure to hold those responsible accountable for a heinous crime. It was clear from the beginning that the government had no interest in prosecuting this crime:
In statements made in 1982, Judge Ramírez Amaya--the first of four judges to sit in the case--referred to "premeditated omissions on the part of the officials in charge of justice" aimed at "covering up the assassination from the beginning." The Judge stated, in this regard:Monsignor Oscar Arnulfo Romero was assassinated the afternoon of Monday, March 24, by one shot. I do not believe that the crime will be resolved under the current circumstances. Above all, I believe that no one will be indicted as a result of the work currently being done.
The Criminal Investigations Section of the National Police intervenes in all cases of violent death, even obvious cases of suicide. They always arrive before the judicial authorities. Nonetheless, in the assassination of Monsignor Romero they arrived almost four days after the crime, and did not provide the court any information or evidence of an investigation into the crime. On the 28th I noted this failure to carry out their obligations as criminal justice officers; I directed these observations to the police experts who came around noon, almost four days after the assassination, to ask whether "they could help with anything." The same happened with the office of the Public Prosecutor of the Republic; the special prosecutor came the 28th, also with instructions to be present in the proceedings. These premeditated omissions on the part of criminal justice officers leaves no doubt that there was some kind of conspiracy to cover up the assassination from the beginning.
From report of the Inter-Amercian Commission of Human Rights, Case no. 11-481, April 13, 2000, para. 89.