The passing of Verónica Viviana Medina, who died last Thursday from burn wounds, is part of Argentina’s troubling trend of female deaths after being lit on fire by their partners. Since February 2010, 14 women have been murdered through such extreme acts of domestic violence. Ms. Medina, 32, passed away in a Buenos Aires hospital after over 60 percent of her body was burned three weeks ago.
Police reports say that Medina began an argument with her husband in front of their two children that escalated quickly. Medina’s husband then doused her in alcohol and set her ablaze. Medina was able to run onto the street shouting for help from her neighbors. She identified her husband, Daniel Fernando Rodríguez, 32, as the perpetrator. This was considered rare as most of the 14 women were not able to escape their attackers and notify the public.
Ms. Medina’s death was one of three that have already occurred in 2011, with many additional hospitalizations. In another incident last week, Vanesa Barrera, 21, was lit on fire by her 22-year-old boyfriend in the La Matanza district of Buenos Aires. She remains hospitalized with 80 percent of Barrera’s body having suffered serious burns.