José Carlos and his friend Adrián, who survived the attack outside the disco. / sur

Malaga disco hit-and-run victim named: "He was in the wrong place at the wrong time"

The 23-year-old had gone to the Akari disco with his girlfriend and some friends on Saturday night for a birthday celebration

OFÍA FERNÁNDEZ / IRENE QUIRANTE Malaga

He was 23 and on Saturday night he went with his girlfriend and some friends to the Akari disco in Malaga for a birthday celebration. He never came home. It was meant to be a fun night, but it all went wrong at 6.30am on Sunday morning when he was hit by a car, apparently deliberately, and killed. His name was José Carlos, and his family and friends are devastated by his death.

He was an only child and was brought up by his mother and grandparents because his father died when he was a few months old. He still lived in the family home, in an apartment block in El Ejido district. He became ‘the man of the house’ during the pandemic, when his grandfather died. He had left school at an early age, and was working at a fish packaging firm.

He liked reggaeton and spending time with his friends and girlfriend, who he had been with for ten months. He also enjoyed video games and was a football fan. Everybody in the area knew José Carlos and those we spoke too all said he was a lovely, polite young man.

"Wrong place at the wrong time"

“He was so unlucky to have been in the wrong place at the wrong time,” said one neighbour, sadly. She had known him all his life and had been given the news by her son, who is almost the same age.

On Monday the police arrested a man who they believe drove the car at the group outside the door of the disco early on Sunday morning, just after it closed. He is accused of one count of murder and two of attempted murder. Another man who was in the car at the time was also arrested, for trying to conceal a crime. Three other people were injured and taken to hospital after the incident, including José Carlos’ girlfriend.

Witnesses said there had been a fierce argument at the disco, and soon afterwards they saw a car mount the pavement and accelerate towards the group standing outside. José Carlos, who the police say was dragged 30 metres by the car as it sped off, died instantly.

Those who knew the 23-year-old victim are devastated by his loss, and now they are just hoping justice will be done with regard to the person or people responsible for his death.