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Antonio De Pace, 28, called police near Messina, Silicy, Tuesday to confess that he had killed Lorena Quaranta, 27, police said. Local reports indicated she had been strangled and he subsequently attempted to commit suicide before he was found by police.
When he was eventually questioned by investigators, De Pace allegedly claimed: “I killed her because she gave me coronavirus.”
Prosecutors, however, found both the suspect and victim had tested negative for the virus. He is currently in custody at a local hospital.
Quaranta was described by Gazzetta del Sud newspaper as a “passionate and brilliant student in her last year of medicine at the University of Messina.” De Pace was known in the area because he carried out home visits.
They had both been drafted into a Sicilian hospital fighting the pandemic, according to the Sun.
Quaranta had recently posted on her Facebook page about the overwhelming challenges Italy’s medical personnel face.
“Now more than ever we need to demonstrate responsibility and love for life. You must show respect for yourselves, your families and the country,” she reportedly wrote.
”You must think and remember those that dedicate their lives daily to looking after our sick.
“Let’s stick together everyone staying at home. Let’s avoid the next one falling sick is a loved one or ourselves.”
Italy has been the hardest-hit country in the world regarding coronavirus deaths.
As of Thursday morning, more than 13,000 people had died in the country of 60 million, the highest amount on the planet, according to a count by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University.
It has more than 110,000 cases, second only the U.S.