The curious case of Hector “Macho” Camacho has taken another turn as the key witness to his murder has left the island of Puerto Rico. Now the case is dismissed, leaving the potential of justice for the former champion not likely.
Almost ten years after “Macho” Camacho was killed outside a Puerto Rico bar in November 2012, five men were arrested and charged back in March. Camacho’s childhood friend Adrián Mojica Moreno was also killed that fateful day.
Mojica was reportedly found with narcotics, nine bags of cocaine in his pocket, and a tenth open in the car.
Fleeing To Florida
On Friday, the case against the five suspects, dependent upon a critical witness, was dismissed as the witness fled the island. Prosecutors believe the witness is in Florida.
Three suspects were already serving federal sentences in Florida for unrelated crimes. Prosecutors, however, have asked for an opportunity to have authorities in the Sunshine State help locate the witness.
In November 2012, the 50-year-old Camacho met a tragic end in Puerto Rico when he was shot in the face while sitting in a Ford Mustang. The incident happened outside a bar in his birthplace of Bayamon, Puerto Rico. Camacho was transported to a hospital in San Juan; however, he died four days after the shooting when he was disconnected from life support.
El Barrio Macho
Camacho was a boxing legend. The three-weight-class world champion left Puerto Rico as a young child and was raised in “El Barrio,” the east side of the Harlem section of New York, also known as Spanish Harlem.
After getting into trouble as a young man, Camacho found his way into boxing, eventually winning three New York Golden Gloves tournaments beginning in 1978.
Camacho turned pro in 1980, quickly dispatching opponents like Melvin Paul, Greg Coverson, Rafael Solis, Rafael Limon, and Jose Luis Ramirez. He went on a tear as a super-featherweight, going 21-0 before winning the vacant WBC title. He moved up in weight, eventually capturing world titles at lightweight and light-welterweight.
Boxing’s Most Audacious
Known for his brazenness, Camacho sometimes spun his opponents, hopped, and reached around them to slug them from behind.
He faced the best of his era and the era right before his with fights against legends like Julio Caesar Chavez, Roberto Duran, who he defeated twice, and Sugar Ray Leonard, who he retired. He also fought legends of his era like Howard Davis and Felix Trinidad,
Seeking a fourth belt at age 35, he lost his last title bout in 1997 to then-welterweight champ Oscar De La Hoya. Camacho was well known for his eccentric ring walk outfits, colorful style, and ability to sell a fight.
The Saga Continues
However, Camacho’s career was not without controversy. He pleaded guilty to a burglary in Gulfport, Mississippi, in 2005, and police found the drug ecstasy on him. He didn’t return to the ring until three years later.
After retiring in 2010, Camacho stayed primarily in Puerto Rico, where he was shot at during an attempt to carjack him in 2011. By the following year he was gunned down.
The saga of one of boxing’s greats continues, and the quest for justice is still ongoing.