Advertisement

Over 100 dead after anarchy breaks out during Brazil police strike

Brazilian military patrol deadly anarchy spurred by police strike
WATCH ABOVE: The killings of more than 100 people have forced the military to step in to control a six-day strike by police in the Brazilian state of Espirito Santo.

More than 100 people have been reported killed, with schools and businesses closed and public transportation at a standstill, as a six-day strike by police in the Brazilian state of Espirito Santo showed no signs of abating on Thursday.

Chaos and anarchy spurred by the strike continued in the coastal state to the north of Rio de Janeiro, despite the deployment of 1,200 army soldiers and federal police and the promise that more help was on its way.

READ MORE: Hundreds of inmates flee after Brazil prison set on fire

Most of the violence was centered in the state capital Vitoria, a wealthy port city ringed by golden beaches, where mining and petroleum industries have a strong base.

State officials said they needed hundreds more federal troops and members of an elite federal police force to help establish order and make up for the 1,800 state police who normally patrol Vitoria’s metropolitan area.

Story continues below advertisement

WATCH: Brazilian residents cheer military police as they enter Espirito Santo

Brazilian residents cheer military police as they enter Espirito Santo
Brazilian residents cheer military police as they enter Espirito Santo

The state government has not released an official number for killings since police went on strike on Saturday for better pay, but a spokeswoman for the union representing police told Reuters early on Thursday it had registered 101 homicides since Saturday.

That would be more than six times the state’s average daily homicide rate compared to last year’s data.

The Globo TV network, citing security officials, reported that 200 cars were stolen in Vitoria on a single day, when the state average is 20.

The state’s retailers association said that businesses have lost $28.87 million since police walked out on the job.

Story continues below advertisement

WATCH: Brazilian government wants army troops to quell violence

Brazilian government wants army troops to quell violence
Brazilian government wants army troops to quell violence

The strike has been assisted by family and friends of officers who have blocked access to barracks and police stations. It comes as Espirito Santo, like many states wracked by Brazil’s worst recession on record, struggles to ensure even basic health, education and security services.

Representatives of the striking police, including some of the officers’ wives, met with state officials Wednesday night to demand that salaries be doubled for every category of officer. The union said they have not received a raise in four years.

READ MORE: Massive prison break caught on camera in Brazil as 40 inmates escape

The base monthly pay for an officer is $847.96, according to Corporal Thiago Bicalho, a spokesman for striking police.

Story continues below advertisement

“We are going to analyze the offer and see what we can do in reality to advance this situation,” said Julio Pompeu, director of the state’s human rights secretariat, who is helping the government negotiate with police.

WATCH: Families of striking Brazilian cops block police stations amid crime spree

Families of striking Brazilian cops block police stations amid crime spree
Families of striking Brazilian cops block police stations amid crime spree

The two sides are scheduled to meet again later Thursday.

(Reporting by Paulo Whitaker and Brad Brooks; Editing by Daniel Flynn and Bernadette Baum)