Diego de Jesús Rojas Velásquez, a reporter and cameraman for
the Supía-based community station Supía TV in central Caldas province, left the
station’s studio around 6 p.m. after receiving a purported tip about an
unspecified story, according to news reports and CPJ interviews. Shortly after,
authorities found his body with four gunshot wounds on a highway connecting Caldas
to the neighboring Antioquia province, local and international news reports
Witnesses told reporters that they heard Rojas arguing with
several unidentified individuals prior to the gunshots. Investigators found his
motorcycle with the keys in the ignition near the scene of the crime, the
regional daily La Patria reported.
Rojas, 52, worked as a journalist in Supía for more than 30
years, colleagues said. Juan Carlos Taborda, Supía TV’s director, told La Patria that he covered sports
and social news, but did not report on sensitive issues. Local police and
family members said he had not received any threats, the Spanish news
service EFE reported. The journalist had also worked for the regional
TV station Cable Unión and contributed occasionally to local dailies.
Supía Mayor Germán Ovidio Tobón said investigators believed
the killing was linked to Rojas’ personal life, the national daily El Tiempo reported. Colombian
authorities offered a 15 million peso (US$7,100) reward.