Former pupil kills 11 in shooting at Rio school
Friday 08 April 2011
Brazilians were struggling to comprehend a shooting at a primary school in Rio de Janerio yesterday that left 11 children dead and many others injured.
In an incident the like of which the country has never experienced before, 10 girls and one boy – aged mostly between 11 and 13 – died after a 23-year-old gunman fired at least 30 rounds at his victims before killing himself. Some of them were told to face the wall before being shot at point-blank range in the head, while others ran away screaming and barricaded themselves in classrooms.
Wellington Oliveira, a former pupil of the Tasso da Silveira school, located in a working-class neighbourhood of western Rio, arrived at 8:30am local time saying he was there to deliver a lecture. However, he was carrying two handguns and a pre-written suicide note, and had already shot two children on a street nearby even before entering the site.
One student told a local TV station how the gunman had repeatedly shouted "I'm going to kill you all!"
"He kept telling the kids to face the wall and was shooting at their heads," Jade Ramos told the Globo network. "The children kept begging, 'No, please!' There was a lot of blood, children agonizing on the stairs."
Four of at least 18 injured children were said to be in a grave condition.
Oliveira's killing spree would have continued had he not been hit in the legs by police bullets. This caused him to fall down some stairs, after which he shot himself in the head.
"This day would have been so much worse if it were not for the hero policemen," said mayor Eduardo Paes, who described the events as a "hellish nightmare".
Though his motive is not yet clear, the murderer's suicide note contained bizarre instructions that his dead body should be bathed and wrapped in a white sheet that he had brought with him. He also directed that it should not be handled by anyone who was "impure", unless they wore gloves, and reportedly said that he was suffering from the AIDS virus.
At an event in the capital, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff asked tearfully and with a strained voice "for one minute of silence for these children who were taken so early from their life". She added: "It's not in the nature of our nation to have these types of crimes."
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
Shock poll shows voters believe Ukip is to the left of the Tories
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
New era of cheap oil 'will destroy green revolution'
Ukip founder Alan Sked and Nigel Farage 'begged Enoch Powell to stand as a candidate'
Ukip candidate jokes about 'shooting peasants' in racist and homophobic rant
£25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: An established media firm based in Surrey is ...
£40000 - £470000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / J2EE Devel...
£70000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Head of Finance - Financial Controller - Fina...
£30000 - £65000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This small technology business ...