A year later, they’re still there. Pilar Fuentes, Roberto Garrido and the photograph of their daughter Johana, who on December 6, 2018 was hit on the Mexico Xochimilco road and the side of Viaducto Tlalpan.
Protected with mouth covers, they stand outdoors behind a modest altar where they have placed the photo of Johana, three candles, a bouquet of roses and a Christmas Eve flower.
Johana, 33, dressed in black, stares at passers-by from a blanket that reads: «On December 06, 2018, between 6:40 and 7:00 AM, I was hit. And, unfortunately, I lost my life in this place. If you know or saw anything, please contact 5524398973».
Her mother and stepfather have more gray hairs, more wrinkles, and the bitter memory of that morning, in which they were told that Johana had been hit by a black van that was driven at speedby by a lady who decided to go on the run.
«It’s been a year since my daughter was run over in this place, she lost her life. We continue in a fight day by day, hoping to find the person who took my daughter’s life. She’s in a place, maybe happy where she is, but we here want justice, and we haven’t found her,» Pilar warns.
For six months, Pilar and Roberto went to the place to stand every morning, Monday through Saturday, at the time their daughter was run over; unfolding the blanket, lighting the candles and watching dozens of vehicles pass by, hoping that someone would stop to help them identify who was hit by their daughter.
Or looking, perhaps illusoryly, for the culprits to be moved by passing through the same place where Johana was laid, losing his vital signs while an ambulance arrived that took more than an hour to pick her up and take her to the nearest clinic.
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After a few months, they stopped once a week, then once a month, until they only left the candles and flowers.
In the absence of an answer, they returned to their daily lives; her, as a newspaper saleswoman, him as an employee in a restaurant.
But on Friday, on his one-year-old turn, they decided to put the blankets back on, change the candles and flowers, and resume their struggle.
«Originally, I thought about closing the street, but then we thought about it, and why affect others?» explains Pilar.
In these months, in addition to planting at the site of the accident, Johana’s family embarked on the long and tortuous judicial journey.
They lifted the record, denounced whoever was responsible, and, as is often the case in Mexico, undertook their own investigation.
In February, after Animal Político released their case, they were wanted by officials of the U.S. Attorney’s Office of Mexico City, but the find-out could not advance for lack of evidence.
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Pilar and Roberto managed to get a company located in the area to give them a video in which they can see how the black van stops after running over Johana; of the vehicle comes down a lady who grabs her head, and a young man who reassures her. Seconds later, the young man climbs the lady on the co-pilot’s side, takes control of the van and flees the place without an auxiliary to Johana.
The video that Pilar saw distinguished the license plate of the van, from the State of Mexico, with the letters NXC and the numbers 3 and 1, but the last two digits could not be seen.
But when the Attorney General gave them the video that was annexed to the folder, it had already been edited, making blurred the plaque and images of the people on board.
You also don’t see when the lady and the young man get off, exchange words and get back on the vehicle, changing places.
«We have not found justice from the government, they have not supported us, I have gone with President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, with the head of government, and no one has supported me until now within a year. I do demand justice for my daughter, because it seems a lie that they, having all the weapons to find the culprits, have not been able to do justice,» Pilar laments.
Johana’s relatives maintain their same demands and doubts.
They want an appointment with the head of government, Claudia Sheinbaum, and with the city’s law enforcement authorities, to reopen the investigation, watch the original videos and try to find the culprit.
They suspect that the person who ran over their daughter is influential, because the attitude of the various law enforcement officers with which they have dealt makes them think that they are protecting her.
«We think they’re influential and that’s why they haven’t found them. And I know a lot of people know, a lot of people know who it was, and I just demand justice for my daughter,» she insists.
On December 6, Johana had just dropped her son off at school, which is a block from the bend where she was run over. After saying goodbye to him, she walked to the bus whereabouts of the Azteca Stadium, where every day she took the transport that took her to work.
But she was hit on the first cruiser she found on her way.
He worked at a pallet stand at the Old Quarter company in a shopping centre in Coyoacán and, so far, his family has not received the compensation they were promised for an accident on the way to work.
The Secretary of Mobility, Andrés Lajous, never communicated with Pilar and Roberto, although in February he said he would take care of the case.
The Tlalpan delegation merely painted white stripes on the cruiser that, little by little, have been erased.
A year later, cars are still speeding down that curve, which in the early morning is dark and dangerous.
Pilar and Roberto are still there, outraged, untouched by their annoyance and their request for justice.
Their faith in government, because it was a «new government,» has already been lost.
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