What happened to Rocio Wanninkhof? Chilling story behind Netflix's 'Murder by the Coast'

Rocio Wanninkhof was brutally murdered in 1999 and her murder became a media spectacle due to many injustices


                            What happened to Rocio Wanninkhof? Chilling story behind Netflix's 'Murder by the Coast'
A still from 'Murder by the Coast' (Netflix)

Netflix has a knack for enthralling viewers with real-life stories that shocked the entire world. Titles like ‘The Night Stalker', ‘Sons of Sam’ and ‘The Vanishing at the Cecil Hotel’ tell the spine-chilling stories of diabolical events that took place in recent years. The newest title to join the bandwagon is ‘Murder by the Coast’, a docuseries that will unravel the truth behind the bone-chilling murder case of Rocio Wanninkhof.

The upcoming series features interviews from all the people associated with the case and why the case is still regarded as one of the worst injustices in the history of the Spanish judicial system. The docuseries tells the story of the murder of teenager Rocio Wanninkhof in 1999, who was stabbed to death three weeks after she went missing.

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After a lot of interrogations and investigation, a family friend, Maria Dolores Vasquez, was found guilty of the crime even when there was no evidence against her. However, a gruesome murder that took place four years later made everyone realized that the killer is still out there.

Let’s take a look at what happened to Rocio Wanninkhof.

Who was Rocio Wanninkhof?

Born on November 19, 1979, Rocio Wanninkhof was a Dutch-Spanish teenage girl who disappeared on October 9, 1999, while returning from his boyfriend’s place. The distance between her place and her boyfriend’s place was just over 500 meters. At 9.30 pm, she was returning from his boyfriend’s place to her house with the intention of changing her clothes before reuniting with him and other friends at a fair later that night. However, she never made it to the fair.

A still from the docuseries 'Murder by the Coast' (Netflix)

 

She lived with her mother, Alicia Hornos, her sister Rosa and Alicia’s former partner Maria Dolores Vázquez in a house in the La Cortijera area of the coastal town La Cala de Mijas, 10km from the popular tourist destination of Fuengirola.

What happened to Rocio?

The 19-year-old girl was going to meet his boyfriend and some friends at the fair in Fuengirola later that evening but never arrived. Her mother, Alicia, was really worried and called his boyfriend and her friends to learn about her whereabouts. However, they said that she never arrived.

The situation was alarming to Alicia and she decided to ease herself by going for a walk. While walking, she found her daughter’s shoes and bloodstains on a path near their home. Alicia knew that something really bad has happened. After an extensive search operation, Rocio’s nude body was found on November 2. At that time, it was reported that she was stabbed nine times and was physically assaulted. During the initial reports, it was suggested that she was killed close to her home and then her body was taken to the location where it was found.

The autopsy confirmed it was Rocio’s body and the wounds were all caused by the same weapon. The killer was believed to be someone familiar with the areas and knew that it will be virtually impossible to find the body at the second location.

The case turned out to grab the attention of all the local media houses and they started covering it. Soon, the case became a media circus and even international media houses began covering it.

Official photograph from 'Murder by the Coast' (Netflix)

 

A jury trial convicted 52-year-old María Dolores Loli Vázquez, the estranged lover of Wanninkhof's mother Alicia Hornos, for the murder, even though there was no evidence relating her to the crime. A lot of character assassination was done and her “homosexuality” was targeted by the prosecutor. The verdict repeated word for word the prosecutor's allegations and found Dolores guilty of the murder of Rocío. She was sentenced to serve 15 years in prison.

‘Murder by the Coast’ premieres exclusively on Netflix on June 23.

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