The Candelária massacre 1993 Rio

The Candelária massacre was an event in Rio de Janeiro, beside the Candelária Church, on the night of July 23, 1993. Eight young people were killed by a group of men, several of which were members of the police. The men were tried for the killings, but only two of them were convicted.

Photo Johnny Leo Johansen(c) 23.05.12 The cross with there names in front of the church starts falling apart, going in to history but hopefully this will never happen again.

Eight street children were killed when policemen shot at a group of about seventy street children as they slept beside the Candelária. One of the children that survived that attack was shot several times before he could testify against the military policemen that were to go to trial. He ended up fleeing from Brazil in order to save his life. Three military policemen were charged in the killings, but only one was convicted.

Fifty officers were accused of the massacre. One of them, Mauricio da Conceição, died during a shootout as he was about to be arrested in 1994. Two others, Marcos Emmanuel and Nelson Cunha, were handed sentences equivalent to life sentences. However, they could potentially avoid the imprisonment, as Brazilian law says that anyone who gets a sentence of twenty or more years in jail, automatically qualifies for a second trial.

It has been estimated that 62 street children survived the massacre. A social worker who later tracked the fate of these homeless survivors found out that eventually 39 of them were either killed by police or by elements of street life, and she discusses this in the documentary film Bus 174.

  • Paulo Roberto de Oliveira, 11 years old
  • Anderson Thome Pereira, 13 years old
  • Marcelo Candido de Jesus, 14 years old
  • Valdevino Miguel de Almeida, 14 years old
  • “Gambazinho”, 17 years old
  • “Nogento”, 17 years old
  • Paulo José da Silva, 18 years old
  • Marcos Antonio Alves da Silva, 20 years old