The Assassination of Col. Rodrigues: The Animated Version

The image “https://i0.wp.com/i113.photobucket.com/albums/n216/cbrayton/Stuff/522429coronel_210_280.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
The colonel lies in a pool of blood beside his mountain bike. Source: Último Segundo

“This was an execution. This was a death-squad member, without a doubt, based on the way it was done. I think this line of investigation should get top priority,” said state police ombudsman Funari.

Investigação sobre morte de coronel termina em troca de tiros (“Investigation into death of colonel ends with shots exchanged”): Globo and other national TV news programs covered the story extensively.

Globo’s coverage was based heavily on the use of (bad, Second Life-style) computer simulations of the event, as is its habit.

Uma denúncia sobre o paradeiro dos assassinos do Coronel José Hermínio Rodrigues levou a polícia a uma rua, na Zona Norte de São Paulo. Ao ver os PMs, dois homens teriam entrado numa casa. Houve troca de tiros. Um suspeito foi morto e o outro fugiu. Ainda não foi confirmado o envolvimento deles no assassinato do coronel.

A tip received about the location of the murderers of Col. Rodrigues led police to a street in the Northern Zone of São Paulo. On catching sight of the military policemen, two men reportedly entered a house. There was an exchange of gunfire. One suspect was killed and another fled. Their involvement in the assassination of the colonel has not been confirmed.

Último Segundo has this, meanwhile:

SÃO PAULO – Júlio César Derrotta Salume, de 18 anos, foi morto por policiais militares na tarde desta quinta-feira em uma ação que buscava suspeitos do assassinato do coronel José Hermínio Rodrigues, nesta quarta-feira.

Júlio César Derrotta Salume, 18, was killed by military police on Thursday afternoon during a police action seeking suspects in the assassination of Col. Rodrigues on Wednesday.

Segundo Jorge Elias Francisco, delegado titular do 40º DP, ao ser abordado, Julio Cesar disparou contra os policiais militares. No revide da Rota, ele acabou sendo atingido e morreu no local. A ação ocorreu em uma casa na Rua Sarita, no Jardim Primavera.

According to the precinct commander of the 40th DP, when approached, Julio Cesar fired on the military police. When ROTA fired back, he wound up being struck and died at the scene. The action took place in a house on Sarita St. in the Jardim Primavera.

Resistance followed by death, in other words.

Globo states categorically that shots were exchanged, without sourcing that statement.

US attributes that statement to an official police source, who is apparently basing his statement on reports from the military policemen involved. Policemen from ROTA.

In other words, US helps you to understand that this is double hearsay. Neither presents interviewswith independent eyewitnesses at the scene (which, I will grant you, is not an easy thing to do in such cases).

On ROTA, see also

O rapaz não tinha passagens pela polícia e não há confirmação de que ele esteja envolvido na morte do coronel, segundo o Boletim de Ocorrência registrado no 40ºDP.

The young man had no police record and there is no confirmation of his involvement in the death of the colonel, according to the incident bulletin filed with the 40th DP.

Diagnosis: Globo hardly ever bothers to practice 5Ws journalism. There seems to be a policy against it.

Corpses have no names, the place where they are produced have no addresses, and versions of the facts have no sources.

The evening news and cable news roundup on the assassination interviewed the state police ombudsman, who reinforced the notion that the murder may well have been connected with discipinary actions taken by the colonel against military policemen who

  1. operated death squads and
  2. took payoffs in exchange for protecting illegal gambling rackets.

On (2), see also

O crime foi na quarta-feira (16). O coronel andava de bicicleta, sem farda, quando um homem que estava numa moto, atirou várias vezes. Rodrigues comandava o policiamento na Zona Norte da cidade e combatia grupos de extermínio especialmente os que tinham participação de policiais militares.

The crime took place on Wednesday. The colonel was riding a bicycle, in civilian clothing, when a man on a motorcycle shot him several times. Rodrigues was patrol commander for the Northern Zone and was combating death squads in which military policemen were involved.

And also military police paid off to protect the gambling rackets, according to the reports we saw on, I think it was, GloboNews and TV Gazeta.

“Foi uma execução. É um integrante de um grupo de extermínio sem dúvida, pela prática. Eu acho que é uma linha de investigação que deve ser privilegiada”, disse o ouvidor das Polícias de São Paulo, Antonio Funari Filho.

“This was an execution. This was a death-squad member, without a doubt, based on the way it was done. I think this line of investigation should get top priority,” said state police ombudsman Funari.

A polícia investiga também se os criminosos que participaram de uma chacina na madrugada desta quinta-feira estariam envolvidos com o assassinato do coronel. Das treze chacinas registradas na capital no ano passado, sete foram na Zona Norte, e, segundo o Departamento de Homicídios, três tinham PMs envolvidos.

[tktktktk]

I thought I had read there were 13 chacinas in the city in the first quarter of last year alone, but I will have to check back through my notes.

Na chacina da última madrugada, sete pessoas que estavam num bar foram mortas e duas ficaram feridas.

In the “massacre” in the early morning hours yesterday, seven persons inside a bar were killed and two wounded.

Which took place where?

Na simulação feita pelo Jornal Nacional, dois homens chegam de motocicleta, atiram num grupo na calçada. E abrem fogo também contra quem estava do lado de dentro. Depois, fogem.

In a simulation done by the Jornal Nacional, two men arrive by motorcycle, firing on a group on the sidewalk. They also fire on those inside. Afterwards, they flee.

I did not see that.

What I understood, however, from watching GloboNews, I think it was, was that the two men (1) entered the bar, (2) emptied their guns, then (3) went outside, (4) reloaded, (5) came back in, and (6) emptied their guns again.

A .38 revolver, or .380 (“9mm short”) pistol, and a 9mm pistol.

Which version reflects what really happened, I wonder?

The Jornal Nacional‘s cartoon version, with its visual impact, or the version reported by several other sources we have consulted on the story.

Os peritos vão comparar as cápsulas encontradas no local da chacina com as que foram recolhidas no lugar onde o Coronel Rodrigues foi morto.

Experts will compare the shells collected at the scene of the “massacre” with those that were collected at the scene of the colonel’s death.

As balas que atingiram o coronel são de uma arma 380, o mesmo calibre de uma das armas usada na chacina.

The bullets that struck the colonel were from a .380 firearm, the same caliber as one of the weapons used in the “massacre.”

I am not an expert on these things, but I think there is a difference between .380, which is used in automatic pistols, and .38, which is used in the famous trintoitão revolver. Which is a different weapon from, for example, the Glock .380, which fires the “9mm short” round.

I have heard both reported now.

But I do not have time to run that point down. Brazilian journalism: If you want the straight facts, you have to go find them out for yourself.

The image “https://i1.wp.com/i113.photobucket.com/albums/n216/cbrayton/simdeth.png” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
NMM(-TV) captured Globo “death plunge” clip, simulating the TAM air disaster, using gtk-recordmydesktop. Its depiction of the aircraft in a steep dive into the TAM freight terminal bears very little resemblance to what actually happened, we found. But it was highly infotaining. See
Brazilian Air Disaster: News Coverage Postmortem, Reel No. 1

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s