Five dead in riots in Bogota, after police mistake

Violent riots broke out on Wednesday in Bogota and other parts of Colombia after a man received repeated electric shocks administered by police who immobilized him on the ground. Five people died in the capital.

After the United States, Colombia. The capital Bogota and the nearby city of Soacha were the scene of violent riots on Wednesday, September 9, after a man was killed by a police raid. Five people were killed and a reward was offered by Colombian Defense Minister Carlos Holmes Trujillo for allowing “the arrest of the perpetrators of the murder”.

At the beginning of these riots, the police arrested a man. The scene, which was filmed and broadcast on social media, shows that witnesses are asking the police to stop administering the landfills. Pictures that shocked the country.

“Please stop”

The nearly two-minute-long films show two Colombian police cyclists, both in helmets, hitting 46-year-old lawyer Javier Ordoñez to the ground and then repeatedly giving him long shocks with his electric heart rate pistols.

“Please stop,” the man on the ground repeats repeatedly. Witnesses to the scene also shouted at the police: “Please stop, we will film you” with a mobile phone.

This police field is reminiscent of that African-American George Floyd was strangled to death by a white police officer who ignored his calls and immobilized him during his arrest. After his death, protests, sometimes very violent, were organized throughout the United States.

“Police abuse”

According to Bogota’s police chief, Colonel Necton Borja, officers responded to disorderly conduct caused by “alcoholics” and Javier Ordoñez tried to “beat the police” before being beaten.

The colonel considered that the victim was “exposed to a non-lethal weapon” before being transported to the police station where she presented “medical complications”. Taken to hospital, Javier Ordoñez, father of two, died some time later.

The mayor of Bogota, Claudia Lopez, considered it a “police abuse”. On Twitter, she demanded “an exemplary punishment” against the police and demanded “a deep and serious restructuring within the police force”.

Defense Secretary Carlos Holmes Trujillo told reporters that “the two agents are already under disciplinary and criminal investigation”.

Riots against police stations

In the afternoon, hundreds of people gathered to protest outside the police station, where the victim was taken before he died. Protesters spray-painted the facade of the building red and threw stones, shouting “resistance,” an AFP reporter reported. Police in riot gear stormed a rally on Friday, removing hundreds of protesters by truck.

Local media reported riots, fires and attacks on a dozen police stations in the northern and western parts of the capital. Riots also occurred in Medellín (northwest), Cali (southwest) and Neiva (center).

President Iván Duque also lamented “the abuses (…) committed by members of the public force”. “We have seen painful events today,” the head of state said, demanding “appropriate sanctions.” In the past, Colombian police have been involved in several abuses of violence scandals.

In November 2019, Dilan Cruz, a young man of 18 who took part in an anti-government demonstration, had been fatally injured in the head by a package of lead balls fired by a special forces force. In August 2011, a street artist, Diego Becerra, was shot while painting graffiti in Bogota.

The United Nations warned in late February of the killings and other alleged abuses committed by Colombian soldiers and police.

Alberto Brunori, representative of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Colombia, noted that in 13 cases of death with state agents, “unnecessary” use and / or disproportionate force was observed.

With AFP