Ricky Martin says Gianni Versace’s murder could have been prevented if police cared more about the LGBTQ community at the time.
Martin, 45, spoke to Haute Living Miami about his upcoming role as Versace’s partner Antonio D’Amico in the next season of “American Crime Story,” which focuses on the assassination of Gianni Versace, and he questioned why the late fashion icon’s killer wasn’t captured sooner.
“I think because he was killing gay men, authorities somewhat turned away and allowed it to happen,” Martin said, explaining that Andrew Cunanan had already killed four other gay men before making his final stop in Miami.
“As someone living in the LGBTQ community in the ’90s, intolerance was a very real thing,” the openly gay star shared.
“Cunanan was in Miami Beach for many weeks, and he was not hiding at all — he was on the list of the most wanted men by the FBI back then — what do you mean they didn’t find him before it happened? It’s not only the question of why he did it, but also, how did we allow that to happen?”
Versace was shot to death on the steps of his Miami mansion on July 15, 1997. He is portrayed by actor Edgar Ramirez in Ryan Murphy’s “The Assassination of Gianni Versace,” which was filmed at the actual estate where Versace and D’Amico lived.
“As a member of the LGBTQ community myself, I must say that I am very happy and proud of everything we’ve accomplished. The fact that we can get married today is amazing — this is something that Gianni and Antonio wanted to do back then but were never allowed-it wasn’t even an option,” Martin shared.
“I’m very happy with the steps we’ve taken since then, but there’s still a lot of ignorance and hate in our world that we need to work on-there’s still a lot that needs to be done.”
Cunana, who will be portrayed by actor Darren Criss in the series, took his own life via a self-inflicted gunshot wound just eight days after killing Versace.
Before murdering the legendary designer, Cunanan also killed at least four other men including former U.S. naval officer and propane salesman, Jeffrey Trail, his ex-lover architect David Madson, real estate developer Lee Miglin and a cemetery caretaker, William Reese, in New Jersey.
The gruesome killing of Miglin, who was stabbed 20 times with a screwdriver and had his throat cut open with a hacksaw, led to Cunanan’s placement on the FBI’s Top 10 Most Wanted List.