Oscar “Sapito” (little frog) Gómez, The alleged main perpetrator behind the death of football fan Emmanuel Balbo is now in police custody. Gómez is accused of instigating the incident of football violence which led to 22 year-old Emmanuel Balbo falling over three meters and landing on his head during the Begrano-Talleres game in Córdoba on Saturday. The fall and the actions leading up to it were all caught on camera.
The four men who have been identified as being the alleged perpetrators of the crime are captured on video attacking Balbo just before he fell. The list of the accused includes: father and son, Matías Oliva and Cristian Oliva, Raúl Vergara and Pablo Robledo. They were all detained after the event. Their actions could see jail time of between 10 and 34 years, with the charge of “aggravated homicide”. The main perpetrator behind the attack, Gómez remained to be found. Yesterday afternoon however, Gómez turned himself in at the police headquarters in the city of Córdoba.
Upon his arrival he was immediately met by an onslaught of journalists, one question asked; “Do you feel remorse?” to which Gómez replied, “Remorse? for what?”.
“Balbo fought with other fans and they were the ones who threw him over, my client had nothing to do with it. They argued before, but about something else,” stated Gómez’s lawyer, Mónica Picco.
Balbo was attacked for being falsely singled out as a Talleres fan — Belgrano’s historic rival — which led to the escalation of violence that he experienced from his fellow fans. The prosecution argues that the man who triggered this was Gómez. The reasoning? A proposed plot of revenge from 2012, when Gómez was convicted of the manslaughter of Emmanuel’s 14 year-old brother, Mauricio, during an illegal street car race.
“We crossed paths with Sapito before the start of the game and he insulted Emmanuel…When the first half finished people sat down and I saw Sapito standing up and looking around, searching for Emmanuel. The attack was premeditated” said Lucas Acosta, Emmanuel’s friend, who was with him at the game.
The head of the Argentine Football Association, Claudio Tapia called Emmanuel’s father, Raúl asking if there was anything that he needed. “What do I need now? Nothing, a brain for my son, “ was the reply he received. Balbo is the 318th person to be killed by football violence in Argentina.