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Survey shows: 50% of Brazilians think "good criminal is dead criminal"

  • 05/10/2015 18h10publicação
  • São Paulolocalização
Daniel Mello reports from Agência Brasil

Parentes de vítimas e moradores de Manguinhos fazem, em frente à Escola Nacional de Saúde Pública da Fiocruz, zona norte da cidade, manifestação contra a violência provocada pelo estado (Tânia Rêgo/Agência Brasil)

"No to state violence" is the demand of protesters against the statement "good criminal is dead criminal"  (Tânia Rêgo/Agência Brasil)Tânia Rêgo/Agência Brasil

The use of force by police officers is supported by half of the population. According to Datafolha poll, commissioned by the Brazilian Forum on Public Security (FBSP in the Portuguese acronym), 50% of people agree with the following statement "good criminal is dead criminal." According to the data, 45% of respondents disagree with this position. 1,300 people were heard in 84 municipalities, with a population of more than 100,000 people.

Support for violent police actions is lower among younger people. From 16 to 24 years old, 42% interviewees declared they agreed with the statement and 53% were against it. From 25 to 34 years old, those standing for and against it reached the same percentage: 48%. The support rate is also lower among those with higher education: 40% agree and 57% disagree with such position.

Black people have also mostly disagreed with the statement: 50% do not support the lethal use of force to combat criminals and 44% accept violence. Among brown people, 48% agreed with the statement and 47% disagreed.

Among the oldest group of the population, those aged 60 or more, the acceptance of the use of lethal force reaches the highest level. According to the survey, 65% agree with the death of criminals and 30% disagree with it. Among the population with only primary education, 58% agree with the use of lethal force and 36% are opposed to it. White respondents also showed more acceptance to the use of violence: 53% agreed and 41 disagreed.

Data from the 9th Brazilian Public Safety Yearbook indicate that in 2014, eight people were daily killed by police officers, totaling 3,022 cases. The number represents 37.2% of the 2,203 deaths caused by security forces in 2013. São Paulo is the state presenting the highest absolute number of killings, recording 965 victims of actions of on or off-duty police officers.


Translated by Amarílis Anchieta

Edited by: Armando Cardoso / Olga Bardawil