Arroyave, 41, news director for the Cartago-based radio station Ondas del Valle and host of the news program “¿Cómo les parece?,” was stabbed early in the morning inside his home in Cartago, Col. Armando Burbano, a spokesman for Cartago police, told CPJ. Although the journalist’s laptop computer was missing, there were no signs of forced entry, Col. Ricardo Restrepo, head of the Valle del Cauca police, told local reporters.
Colleagues at Ondas del Valle, which is affiliated with the national Caracol Radio, said Arroyave presented general political and social news that was not particularly critical of the government. The journalist also worked for the state environmental organization Corporación Autónoma Regional del Valle del Cauca, according to colleagues. He had worked as a Cartago correspondent for the national daily El Tiempo until 2005, and was recently a freelance contributor for the paper, a source at El Tiempo said.
In May 2005, Arroyave canceled his news program temporarily after continuous pressure from Luis Alberto Castro, then the Cartago mayor, whom the journalist accused of corruption, said Carlos Cortés, executive director of the local press freedom group Fundación para la Libertad de Prensa. Arroyave had not mentioned receiving threats in recent months, colleagues told CPJ.
Burbano told CPJ that investigators believe the murder was a crime of passion, but colleagues said they have not discounted Arroyave’s journalism as a possible motive.