Brazilian man is allegedly gassed to his death in a police car boot
Brazil has been outraged by the death of a black man forced to enter a car boot for police where a gas bomb was set off.
Brazil has been outraged by the death of a black man forced to enter a car boot for police where a gas bomb was set off. On Wednesday, Genivaldo De Jesus Santos (38), was stopped by police in Umbauba in Sergipe state. Two officers were seen holding the man's boot as thick smoke billowed out of the car. On Thursday, an autopsy confirmed that Mr Santos had died from asphyxiation. Brazil's Federal Highway Police stated that a disciplinary proceeding was opened to examine the conduct of officers. The federal police also opened an investigation into Mr Santos's death. Conflicting reports exist about the incident. According to a police statement, Mr Santos was arrested for having "actively resisted” the police approach and because of his aggression... immobilization techniques were used and tools of less offensive potential were used to restrain him. Wallison de Jesus, Mr Santos' nephew told local media that he was at the scene and that his uncle was riding a motorcycle when federal highway officers stopped him and asked him if he wanted to take off his shirt. He claimed that his uncle had taken prescription medication for schizophrenia and became nervous when officers discovered the medication. He said that he had told the police about the uncle's condition and that "then the torture started". He claimed that the officers had pinned him down and then bundled him in the boot of the car. Video footage of Mr Santos hanging from his car with the rest inside has been widely circulated online. Two officers can be seen pressing down on the boot doors while Mr Santos screams and kicks. A gas grenade is also visible inside. As Santos's legs stopped moving, a passerby can be heard saying "They're going after the guy". According to his nephew, the officers took him to the hospital after realizing he was unconscious. According to a police statement, Mr Santos was declared dead at the hospital. The state forensic medical institution performed an autopsy and concluded that he died from asphyxia, but could not identify the cause. Maria Fabiana dos Santos was the widow of Mr Santos and described the incident "a crime". She told G1 local newspaper that her husband had never been violent. Brazil has been slammed for the incident, many describing it as a racist act by police officers. This incident occurred on the second anniversary of George Floyd's death, a US-based black man. Renata Souza is a black politician and activist who tweeted: "Another body of black people executed by the hands the State." It is unacceptable. On Thursday, Mr Santos was also protested in Umbauba, according to G1 reports. Tyres were set ablaze on the road where he was murdered. Brazil is home to a lot of police violence. More than 20 people were killed in a raid by police in a Rio de Janeiro, Brazil slum. Since then, police have been accused of using excessive force against deceased people. One human rights lawyer said it was torture.