Lucrecia: A Murder in Madrid (2024) Docuseries Review – A sobering reminder of Spain’s first-recorded hate crime

A sobering reminder of Spain’s first-recorded hate crime

On November 13, 1992, Lucrecia Pérez, an immigrant Dominican woman, was shot and killed by a neo-Nazi while she took refuge in an abandoned nightclub in Madrid with other immigrant women. Her murder, which sent shockwaves around Spain and sparked multiple protests, later became known as the country’s first recognized hate crime. 

The events leading up to Lucrecia’s death and the court trials of those who stood accused of her murder are depicted in the 4-part Disney+ documentary ‘Lucrecia: A Murder in Madrid.’

The doc features an interview with Lucrecia’s daughter, Kenia Carvajal Pérez, who was just six years old when her mom died, and we also hear from other people who knew Lucrecia, including a woman who resided with her in the building where the crime took place. From their accounts, we discover Lucrecia was a shy but kind-hearted person who wanted the best for her family. 

Outside of those who knew Lucrecia personally, there are first-person testimonies from Spanish officials, including former Vice President Narcís Serra. He talks about the impact Lucrecia’s death had on Spain and how it caused the country to rethink its stance on racism and change for the better.

The documentary also features an abundance of archival footage, which includes video clips of protestors standing up to racism in Barcelona, Granada, and other places in the country. These scenes are in stark contrast to the clips we see before the events of November 1992, when a news journalist asked Spanish locals what they thought of the immigrant population. The answers given were largely negative, due to the misplaced belief that the immigrants were taking jobs away from the country’s residents. 

After Lucrecia’s death, the shift in the public mindset was a welcome one, but it’s just a pity an innocent woman had to die before a country’s people became more tolerant of the immigrants living among them. But for the majority, the presence of foreigners in their towns and cities was not a reason to strike out against them with hate-fuelled crimes. The same was not true of the people who killed Lucrecia, however, who had extreme-right, racist ideologies. 

Shockingly, the person who shot Lucrecia was a member of the Civil Guard, who is described by one person as a “trigger-happy gunslinger.”  His accomplices were three teenage boys, who shared his racist beliefs and travelled with him to the immigrant shelter  “to teach the Blacks a lesson.” We learn about their backgrounds and how events in their early life may have triggered their desire to take revenge on the immigrants living in their community. 

Questions were raised in the subsequent court trials about their intent on the night of the murder. Did they mean to kill Lucrecia? Some argued no, but the fact that each of them had a weapon on them might suggest otherwise. 

There are no new interviews from those responsible for Lucrecia’s death but there is interview footage of some of the accused that was taken around the time of the murder. Luis appears particularly sorrowful about his actions but whether or not he intended to kill Lucrecia is unclear.

We see footage of the trial, learn of the sentences that were handed down to those charged with the crime, and get insight into the societal shift that followed the groundbreaking court case that made Spaniards face up to the racism inherent in their country.

But within all of this is the very personal story of Lucrecia Pérez, a Dominican woman who moved to Spain hoping to build a better life for her family and who tragically died several months later. Footage of her lying in the coffin at her funeral is a sobering reminder that she was a young woman whose life was taken way before her time.

Lucrecia didn’t die in vain – one immigrant woman speaks of how her death saved the lives of many (in reference to the subsequent change in laws relating to hate crimes). But this is of no compensation to her daughter who, at the end of the documentary, talks with sadness about the mother she lost and the pain she has endured knowing the men who are responsible for her mom’s death are now walking free. 


Read More: What happened to Lucrecia Pérez?

You Can Check Out More Of Our TV Show Reviews Here!

  • Verdict - 7.5/10