Former Chilean police officer found guilty for assault that left woman blind

A Chilean court on Thursday convicted a former special forces police captain of assault after a woman was left blinded by a tear gas canister in late 2019, when the country was rocked by massive protests.

The court found that former Captain Patricio Maturana had committed “unlawful coercion resulting in serious and very serious injuries” to Fabiola Campillai, whose eyes were permanently damaged after being hit in the face by a police-issue canister while waiting for the bus.

His sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 10, the prosecutor’s office has requested a 12-year prison sentence.

The case became one of the most notorious of the estimated 3,000 people who were injured during the often violent protests.

Last year, Campillai was elected as a senator.

Human rights organizations have criticized what they say was a heavy-handed police response to the protests, which also left 30 people dead.

Maturana was arrested by members of the police Human Rights Squad in August 2020.

Campillai and members of her family are also suing the state for damages, seeking over $2 million in compensation.

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