Note from BW of Brazil:The shooting and subsequent dragging of a woman’s body from the back of a police vehicle is once again provoking shock at the behavior of “Rio’s finest” in the online community. As María Martín put it, Cláudia Silva Ferreira’s death “lowered a bit more the price of a life in Brazil.” Spokespersons for the police have once again offered lip service about the incident in the typical, “we lament this…this is not standard procedure…” or that the “preservation of life and human dignity” is what the police stand for. It that were the case, why is it that these murderous police consistently enter poor, predominantly black communities with guns blazing? One will note that these types of incidents don’t happen in ritzy, upper-middle class neighborhoods from where much of the drug sales they always claim to fight in poorer neighborhoods comes from.
As these outrageous events continue to prove the blatant disregard for human life continue, a plot to violently repress these communities is starting to look like the only viable explanation. The community isn’t fooled by the rhetoric. In the latest on this incident, the victim’s daughter appeared on a nationally televised news program to discuss what happened.
“They thought she was a criminal,” says daughter of woman dragged by police in Rio
Thais Lima was in the studio of the Bom Dia Rio program on Tuesday (18).
Cláudia Ferreira da Silva was dragged on the ground by a police car after being shot.
Thais Lima, the daughter of Cláudia Ferreira da Silva, who was dragged by a Military Police car on Sunday morning (16) after being hit by a stray bullet in Morro da Congonha in Madureira, a suburb of Rio, said that the police that were on the scene found thought Cláudia was involved with drug trafficking. Thais went to the studio of the Bom Dia Rio Globo TV program on Tuesday morning (18) to tell how it all happened. She said she doesn’t believe the Military Police.
“It was just around the corner and she was in front of the. They [the police] gave her two shots, one to the chest, which went through and the other, I don’t not know if it was in the head or neck that they said. And she fell on the ground. Then they [the police] said that they got scared because the coffee cup that was in her hand. They were thinking she was a criminal, that she was giving coffee to the criminals,” she said.
According Thais, residents tried to prevent the police from taking Cláudia of the location. In the melee, police reportedly shot in the air to keep people away. Still according to her, the trunk of the car of which the MP took Cláudia opened a first time on Buriti Street, shortly after the rescue was done by MPs.
“One grabbed her by the pants and the other by the leg and threw her into the Blazer, from inside, anyway. She was crooked inside. After they got out for her and the trunk was open. She fell again on Buriti [the street in Madueira] along the way, and they took her and put her inside again. If they saw she was like this why didn’t they straighten her out (sic) and not shut the door again right?” she asked.
The victim’s daughter said that gunfights are common in Morro do Congonha, but the episode that took the life of her mother was atypical, since, according to her, there was no confrontation with drug traffickers and the Military Police came into the community shooting.
“There it’s almost always the case, but this time nobody understood anything about their attitude, of coming in shooting like that in the street. There was no exchange of fire,” she explained.
Thais also commented on the difference in attitude in helping her mother and another person shot in the same situation. According to her, the body of the man who was shot in a shootout remained in place waiting for the crime scene/forensic investigation, while Cláudia was taken to the hospital.
“If you kill her, as if she was a criminal, why did they leave the other one on the street? His body lay there, waiting for the investigation,” she asked, saying that she wanted justice in solving the case that killed her mother. “I want justice and that they pay for what they did to my mother,” she added.
Beltrame repudiates conduct of MPs
The Secretary of Public Security José Mariano Beltrame, said through a statement on Monday (17) that he repudiated the conduct of the officers who rescued the cleaning assistant. He reported that, in addition to a Military Police investigation being military instituted, the Civil Police is also investigating the case.
Warrant officers Adir Serrano Machado and Rodney Miguel Archanjo, and Sergeant Alex Sandro da Silva Alves, were caught in the act and will be judged by the Audit of Military Justice after completion of Inquérito Policial Militar (IPM or Military Police Investigation), which has 30 days to be finalized. The result of the study performed by the Centre for Criminology of the MP will be attached to the document . They will be forwarded to Bangu 8, in the Penitentiary of Gericinó, in Rio’s west zone, after the end of statements.
The Military Police said in a statement that the conduct of taking the victim in the trunk is not consistent with the guidelines of the training course of the corporation. According to the MP, the correct procedure when there is possibility of helping shot victims is to put the victim in the back seat of the vehicle.
Witnesses reported that Cláudia was placed in the trunk of the police car to be taken to hospital. However, along the way, the trunk opened, she fell out and was dragged down the street.
Community residents also accused the police officers who participated in the action of falsifying an action. According to reports, the MPs planted weapons next to the body of the second suspect killed in the operation. On Sunday and Monday, residents of Madureira held demonstrations against Cláudia’s death.
“We are very sorry for the way the Cláudia was helped, it’s a way that we do not condone. The corporation does not condone it. For this reason, they are being sued and will be taken to the prison unit,” said public relations of the MP, Lt. Col. Cláudio Costa in an interview with GloboNews. “The ideal was that she was in the back seat, supported by a policeman. That did not happen,” added Costa, referring to how the victim was rescued.