Cell-phones: An effective weapon against Brazil's police force
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Cell-phones: An effective weapon against Brazil's police force

A police officer in the Brazilian coastal town of Recife was suspended on Friday after video footage recorded on a cell-phone shows him firing a rubber bullet at point blank range at a protestor.

Police state

The protest movement, Movimento Ocupe Estelita (Occupy Estelita Movement) accidentally knocked off the officer’s cap while carrying a banner. A split-second later and the official opens fire:

The movement were trying to block a private real estate development, protesting that the space should be for the creation of a new public park,  The New York Times reported.

Occupy Estelita has shared a photo of the wounded activist’s shoulder on their Facebook page:

A caminhada seguia tranquila quando um dos manifestantes foi alvejado à queima roupa por uma bala de borracha sem…

Posted by Movimento#OcupeEstelita on Thursday, 1 October 2015


Injury, and even deaths as a result of police response is now being challenged in Brazil, thanks to the large percentage of the population that own cell-phones.

More than 75 percent of Brazilians aged over 10-years-old now own a cell-phone, meaning that those affected now have proof if they are attacked. However, this doesn’t always ensure that cases reach court, or are awarded a fair trial.

But after a DVD seller was shot in the head in São Paulo during September 2014, cell-phone footage changed the police version of events, resulting in the detainment of the officer in question.

Yet as a result of police operations continues across Brazil.  Between 2005 and 2009, an average of one person was killed by police forces per day in São Paulo State—a total of 2,045. Across the country, 1,890 people were killed in police operations during 2012, averaging five people per day, Citylab reports.

Because I’m happy?

Could police related violence be just a part of why Brazilians’ are no longer topping happiness ratings across Latin America?

Almost two out of three Brazilians (that’s 63 percent) think that Rousseff’s presidency will go from bad to worse, according to a September survey carried out by pollsters Ibope.

Not forgetting Brazil’s defeat to Germany during the 2014 World Cup: 7 to 1.

Brazilians have lost a bit of their alegría (happiness) of late.

See also:

Brazilians takes to the streets in anti-Rousseff marches

Opinion: Are right-wing ideologues at the center of Brazil’s anti-Dilma protests?