HomeNewsBriefRio de Janeiro Homicides Reach 21-Year Low
BRIEF

Rio de Janeiro Homicides Reach 21-Year Low

BRAZIL / 19 JUL 2012 BY TRACEY KNOTT EN

In the state of Rio de Janeiro, homicides have fallen to the lowest level since 1991, another indicator of the growing success of Brazil's “pacification” project.

The Regional Institute of Public Safety reported that Rio de Janeiro’s homicide rate for the first five months of 2012 is the lowest in 21 years. So far, the 2012 rate is at 10.9 homicides per 100,000 residents. Homicides fell to 1,784 — a 8.3 percent drop from last year, when 1,945 people were killed in the first five months.

Authorities attribute the decline to the government’s “pacification” project, which began in 2008 in an attempt to reduce violence in Brazil’s second largest city.

The news comes as Rio prepares to host the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympic games.

InSight Crime Analysis

The decline in Rio’s homicides appears to be a sign that pacification is working, along with other recent indicators of the program’s success. On June 28, a Rio neighborhood drug boss surrendered to police, reportedly due to pressures from increased police activity and gang competition in his territory. The boss operated in the northern part of the city, which has the largest concentration of Police Pacification Units (UPPs).

However, the pacification program is not without problems. While a recent report by Human Rights Watch praised the project for cutting down violence overall, it warned of human rights violations by police such as extrajudicial killings.

The application of the pacification program is also unbalanced, resulting in uneven crime rates throughout the city. Terra Brazil noted that neighborhoods with UPPs had lower rates of violent crime than those without. Although the data indicates some level of success for the pacification project, a complete reduction in violence is unlikely until UPPs are more widespread in Rio.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

BRAZIL / 16 AUG 2021

The capture of a top Anti-Bala coalition member in Paraguay threatens to weaken a longstanding criminal in Brazil's southern border…

BRAZIL / 9 AUG 2022

Under President Jair Bolsonaro, Brazil's highway police seems to have become a brutal instrument of death.

ARGENTINA / 27 MAY 2021

While contraband has boomed at the Argentina-Brazil border during the COVID-19 pandemic, wine seems to have been in particularly high…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Europe Coverage Makes a Splash

20 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an analysis of the role of Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport as an arrival hub for cocaine and methamphetamine from Mexico.  The article was picked up by…

THE ORGANIZATION

World Looks to InSight Crime for Mexico Expertise

13 JAN 2023

Our coverage of the arrest of Chapitos’ co-founder Ovidio Guzmán López in Mexico has received worldwide attention.In the UK, outlets including The Independent and BBC…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Shares Expertise with US State Department

16 DEC 2022

Last week, InSight Crime Co-founder Steven Dudley took part in the International Anti-Corruption Conference organized by the US State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, & Labor and…

THE ORGANIZATION

Immediate Response to US-Mexico Marijuana Investigation

9 DEC 2022

InSight Crime’s investigation into how the legalization of marijuana in many US states has changed Mexico’s criminal dynamics made a splash this week appearing on the front page of…

THE ORGANIZATION

‘Ndrangheta Investigation, Exclusive Interview With Suriname President Make Waves

2 DEC 2022

Two weeks ago, InSight Crime published an investigation into how Italian mafia clan the ‘Ndrangheta built a cocaine trafficking network from South America to ‘Ndrangheta-controlled Italian ports. The investigation generated…