Vicarious violence

Father who killed his son in a hotel had not planned to escape

The Mossos think the man hanged himself shortly after the murder

3 min
The father killed the son on August 24 at the Hotel Concòrdia in Barcelona.

BarcelonaOn the night of 24 August Martín Ezequiel Álvarez Giaccio avoided the front door to leave Hotel Concordia in Barcelona, where he had just killed his two-year-old son by suffocating him. In a few minutes, the man took a taxi to Terminal 1 of El Prat airport, which was the place where he put an end to an escape that, according to the Mossos d'Esquadra, he had not planned. The police think that, once in El Prat, the man ran around the outside of the airport "with the aim of not being seen". He jumped the fences of the enclosure until he reached a wooded area next to the Llobregat, where he committed suicide by hanging himself with the belt he was wearing.

The head of the criminal investigation division (DIC) of the Mossos in Barcelona, the inspector Josep Naharro, explains that the agents of the aquatic unit located Álvarez's body this Wednesday at 13.15 h in a water channel, hidden between reeds in an area that is difficult to access. Naharro says the man did not want "to be found". The area had previously been inspected on foot and by air - with a drone - and the body had not been seen. But the "slight smell of putrefaction" that was now emanating, says the inspector, alerted the agents, who were watching the water and vegetation. The body was decomposing because the place is humid and hot, which is why it could not be physically identified, Naharro said. On the other hand, the judge on duty in El Prat considered that it corresponded to Álvarez, the most wanted man in Catalonia for three weeks.

The scientific police of the Mossos confirmed this morning, after comparing the prints on the body with those on Álvarez's identity document, that it is indeed him. When the investigators inspected the body they found no money, no plane ticket or documentation -his passport had been found in a house when they were looking for him-. This leads them to believe that the man had no plan to escape and that he hanged himself a few hours after the murder. A fact that the autopsy will be able to determine. Naharro says they do not know what motivated Álvarez to go to the El Prat airport, although he thinks that perhaps he wanted to "throw off" investigators.

The Mossos have found no evidence that the man had the support of another person or that he tried to contact his family and friends once he had already committed the crime. The investigators had also verified that Álvarez had not activated his phone nor made money movements. Nor had they detected any farewell notes before committing suicide. Police suspect that the man, who has no previous convictions, had not been planning the murder for days, but had planned it in a very short time. In fact, when Álvarez sent the boy's mother - the couple had just separated - the following messages: "You'll regret it" and "I'll leave you at the hotel what you deserve", she immediately alerted the police, who located the dead child as soon as they entered the hotel room.

The dead or alive hypothesis

Naharro explains that the Mossos were working with two hypotheses: that the man was dead, or alive. As they thought Álvarez might try to flee, this led the police to activate multiple units throughout Catalonia the day after the crime, on 25 August, in order to find him. They also decided to disseminate his photo on the same day so that people could identify him if he took a means of transport. As a result of this call, the Mossos received about a hundred tips that they verified, one of which led them to a man who was hitchhiking and who turned out to be a Dutch tourist. The calls served to place El Prat as the last place where Álvarez had been seen.


The fact that police believed the man could be alive meant they placed 24-hour protection on the boy's mother which is now expected to be withdrawn. The woman has also received support from the victim's support group. The family's lawyer, Carla Vall, says they want to pursue civil action for financial compensation.