Victoria Tcaciuc, a contractor for the U.S. Department of State, was found strangled in a hotel room in centro (downtown) district of Rio de Janeiro, on Feb. 20, 2013. According to Alessandro Rufino Oliveira Carvalho, 42, the man accused of murdering Tcacuic, she and he met at a Copacabana Beach craft fair. Copacabana, is the most popular area among tourist. The two visited a local bar and became inebriated. Carvalho has previously spent eight years in prison for assualt, according to sources in Rio de Janeiro.
Hotel security videos show the couple entering a centro hotel at 1:24 am and Carvalho departing alone at 2:55am. The morning shift later found the woman dead. Police arrested Carvalho on the 28th of March on a bus on the President Dutra Highway as he was returning from Sao Paulo, where he had gone to visit family. Carvalho maintains his innocence. He says the victim was alive when he left the room at 2:55am. Why the two went to a hotel in centro has not yet been firmly established.
Victoria Tcaciuc was visiting Brazil for the first time. Rio de Janeiro was her first stop on a five-city tour.