Joseph Hernández Ochoa, journalist, assassinated

Posted on March 1, 2010

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Joseph OchoaA journalist died and a second one was injured during an assassination attempt by unidentified people, on Monday night in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Joseph Hernández Ochoa, a journalist with Channel 51, died from gunshot wounds next to Karol Cabrera, from the state-owned Channel 8, when they were attacked from a moving vehicle. Hernandez Ochoa died on the site of the incident while his companion Karol Cabrera was taken urgently to the Escuela Hospital. She is out of danger although she was shot twice on her side and once on her left arm. The incident took place in the El Chile sector in Tegucigalpa around 8:00 pm, when the two journalists were on their way to Cabrera’s home in the Cerro Grande neighborhood.

The attackers fired no less than 10 times, three of which hit Cabrera and the rest Ochoa. Hernandez Ochoa was the anchor of the “Encuentros” program on Channel 51. Karol Cabrera participates in youth entertainment programs, works on a news show in Radio Cadena Voces, and has a show on the state-owned Channel 8. During her work as a journalist on the official channel she was known for defending Roberto Micheletti’s government (July 2009 to January 2010) and for her ongoing criticisms of the popular movement’s demands for a return to the constitutional state.

The spokesman with the Security Secretary, Leonel Sauceda, said that Cabrera had police protection starting three weeks previous. He maintained that the police was watching over her home upon her request. According to Sauceda, the assassination attempt was against Cabrera. She had previously denounced several death threats from members of the resistance movement against the coup. On December 15, 2009, her daughter Katherine Nicolle Rodriguez was shot to death in the same El Chile neighborhood.

According to the police, the goal of the attackers was to end with the journalist’s life.

SOURCE: COMITE POR LA LIBRE EXPRESION/ C‐Libre

ALSO SEE: Politicians and media urged not to try to exploit journalist’s murder, Reporters Without Borders