Hundreds of people turned out to honor an Italian police officer believed to have been stabbed to death by two American teenagers in Rome.
The body of Deputy Brigadier Mario Cerciello Rega, a member of the famed Italian Carabinieri paramilitary police force, was brought to a chapel in central Rome on Sunday 28th of June.
The slain officer’s new wife, Rosa Maria, wept and placed her hands on his coffin as it was carried inside. Today, a funeral will be held at the same chapel where she married Cerciello Rega on June 19th in his hometown of Somma Vesuviana, Forty-three days later, Rosa Maria will return to the church a widow.
Hundreds of people attend?funeral of?Italian cop who was stabbed to death by two American teenagers barely 40-days after he got married
Somma Vesuviana Mayor Salvatore Di Sarno has proclaimed Monday to be a ‘day of mourning’ for the city near Naples. Cerciello Rega, 35, had just returned to duty after his honeymoon in Madagascar when he was stabbed eight times and left bleeding in the street near Rome’s Tiber River at around 3am Friday morning.
Northern California high school classmates Gabriel Christian Natale-Hjorth, 18, and Finnegan Lee Elder, 19, have been accused of murdering Cerciello Rega after a bungled drug deal outside a hostel where they were staying in Rome.
Detectives say Elder and Natale-Hjorth were trying to buy drugs before the slaying, but were sold a fake substance. They then allegedly robbed a man of his backpack and demanded that he pay them ‘100 euros and 1 gram of cocaine’ to get his property back. The man agreed but promptly contacted police about the extortion attempt, officials said.
Cerciello Rega and his partner were both in plainclothes when they responded to the complaint and confronted the suspects, identifying themselves as Carabinieri, officials said. A struggle ensued and Elder allegedly stabbed Cerciello Rega eight times while Natale-Hjorth allegedly punched the partner repeatedly, according to a police report.