Family of ‘innocent woman’ ‘accidentally shot by police’ during Lisbon car chase hears no-one is responsible

The family of 36-year-old Ivanice Costa – shot by police who mistook the car she was in for that of their suspects – have heard that no-one is to be blamed for her death.

Say reports, PJ police have not found any proof to accuse the six agents who fired between 30-40 rounds into the vehicle.

The report reaching this conclusion has now been forwarded to DIAP (the department of investigation and penal action) suggesting the investigation be archived.

How the family react we may never know. The dead woman’s loved ones are based in Brazil and apparently very poor.

After Ivanice was shot in the neck in the early hours of the morning of November 15, 2017, her mother admitted she didn’t have the money to arrange for her daughter’s body to be transported ‘back home to Brazil’ for burial.

Blaming Portugal squarely for Ivanice’s death, Maria Luzia da Costa said: “They are guilty, the government, the State. They should send me my daughter…”

In the end, the restaurant at Lisbon airport where Ivanice had worked for the last 17 years, stepped in to pay – and since then, very little had been spoken of this tragedy.

It was justified by police at the time for the fact that the driver of the car Ivanice was travelling in, her partner, refused police orders to stop.

Said police, he actually ran one of the agents over.

A damning opinion article in the aftermath pointed out that “we don’t know the story of Ivanice’s partner, only that of the agents” – and as such, the PJ crack-shots stories tallied with what is permitted by law: if there is an act of ‘illicit aggression against police’, they are entitled to use a firearm.

That the welter of bullets then fired into the Renault Mégane hit Ivanice in the neck, front and back, did not suggest for a minute that agents actually meant to shoot anyone inside the vehicle, a former police chief told journalists at the time.

But there have been cases where police shooting at fleeing cars have been prosecuted, seeing their professional lives ruined (click here)

Thus an uncomfortable feeling pervades this case.

As leader writer Fernanda Câncio wrote at the time in her opinion article larded with outrage, Ivanice was “Brazilian and poor. She just died”.

For the background to this story (click here).

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com