Gabriel Natale-Hjorth Wiki
Gabriel Natale-Hjorth Biography
Who is Gabriel Natale-Hjorth?
Gabriel Natale-Hjorth is one of two American students who have been sentenced to life imprisonment by a Rome court for killing an Italian policeman. After nearly 13 hours of deliberation, a jury convicted Finnegan Elder, 21, and Natale-Hjorth of killing Officer Cerciello Rega, 35.
Rega had just returned to duty after his honeymoon when he was stabbed to death on a street in central Rome in July 2019. Elder stabbed Rega 11 times after a botched drug operation and Natale-Hjorth helped him hide. the murder weapon, the jury found.
How old is Gabriel Natale-Hjorth?
Gabriel Natale-Hjorth is 20 years old in the year 2021.
Parents of Gabriel Natale-Hjorth
Both defendants have said that they did not know that the Carabinieri paramilitary officer was a policeman and claimed that they acted in self-defense.
Elder looked stunned when the verdict was read on Wednesday night, May 5. During a brief court appearance on May 5, Elder’s parents were in court as was Natale-Hjorth’s uncle. Rega’s widow, Rosa Maria Esilio, burst into tears in court after hearing the verdict.
The case has attracted a lot of attention in Italy, in part because it is extremely rare for tourists to be charged with violent crimes. Carabinieri officer Mario Cerciello Rega, 35, had been a newlywed and was hailed as a hero after his death, honored with a state funeral.
Then-Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte called his “broken life” a deep national wound.
Gabriel Natale-Hjorth San Francisco
The trial examined whether the two Americans, friends from California high school, knew if Cerciello Rega and his partner were police officers during their late-night encounter. Elder, who admitted to the stabbing, said he thought a drug dealer had attacked him and immobilized him. But Cerciello Rega’s partner described the encounter differently, saying officers had shown the Americans their badges.
Like his acquaintance with him, Natale-Hjorth had been charged with murder for his involvement in the events that led to the murder.
When the defendants were brought out of the courtroom, Elder’s father yelled, “Finnegan, I love you,” according to the Associated Press. Cerciello Rega’s widow sobbed and hugged the murdered officer’s brother. Elder and Natale-Hjorth had started the night of July 25, 2019, trying to get drugs in the lively Roman neighborhood of Trastevere. The two had given 80 euros to a broker for cocaine.
But they had been ripped off and given an over-the-counter pain reliever.
Ethan and Leah Elder
The Americans, in retaliation, left with the intermediary’s backpack, returning to the area of their hotel. The backpack contained the broker’s phone number, and when he called from another number, the Americans answered. They agreed to meet again.
This is how, long after midnight, Elder and Natale-Hjorth were on the streets of Rome, trying to get their money back. They were waiting for the middle man.
But instead, it was Cerciello Rega and his partner, Andrea Varriale, who responded to the reported theft. The officers arrived in civilian clothes, without their weapons.
Finnegan Elder and Gabriel Natale Hjorth
Rega, 35, and an associate were called in to investigate an extortion attempt after Elder and Natale-Hjorth allegedly stole a cell phone from a street cocaine dealer who had taken money from him without supplying drugs. The then teenagers used the phone to schedule a meeting and get their money back, the court heard.
The youths said they thought Rega and his partner Andrea Varriale, who were dressed in civilian clothes, were thugs attacking them on a dark street when the fight to the death occurred. The students then fled the scene, but were located the next day after police found the knife used to kill Rega.
The incident took place when Natale-Hjorth was visiting Italian relatives near Rome when he met Elder, who was traveling in Europe, on July 26, 2019. Both teens were from California and attended the same school. Elder, who was traveling with a 7-inch combat knife in his suitcase, and Natale-Hjorth said they mistook the officers for criminals who wanted to catch them and acted in self-defense.
On the day of the murder, the students had contacted an intermediary to buy cocaine in Trastevere, a popular nightlife area. The middleman took the teens to a drug dealer, who charged them 80 euros ($ 96.2) for “cocaine,” but sold them aspirin.
While retaliating, they took the bag from the broker, who had his mobile phone, and fled before allegedly demanding a ransom in cash and cocaine to return the bag. The intermediary agreed to meet the couple in the Prati district. He had also contacted the police to report the theft and the two officers went to the scene.
Ethan Elder San Francisco LinkedIn
Elder described a scene in which he was defending himself against a person who had not shown identification and was trying to “strangle or strangle me.” On the stand, Elder’s mother testified about receiving a video call from her son right after her arrest, in which he had called the situation “really, really bad.” Elder said his nephew had dealt with drug problems in high school and beyond. He attended a year of community college in San Diego before coming to Europe.
He had met Natale-Hjorth in Rome, whom he knew from high school.
All over Europe, he had carried a seven-inch combat knife, something he had bought in California.
Elder said his nephew had become “very paranoid, and the reasons for that I’m not exactly sure.” In her testimony, the defendant’s mother also described mental health problems and said that her son had attempted suicide a year before the murder.
Once the trial began, Finnegan Elder apologized in court for the murder and said he was “full of remorse.”