By Sarah de Sainte Croix, Senior Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Police opened up an investigation yesterday into an incident that occurred on Sunday night during a rehearsal for the Portela samba school in Madureira, Zona Norte (North Zone), which killed one person and left a further 41 injured.
Witnesses report that a speeding car came crashing through the barriers hitting a large group of people before driving off. About fifteen minutes later a bomb exploded nearby compounding the injuries.
The white Mercedes is believed to have been driven by criminals who were being chased by police before taking a wrong turning up the closed off road and crashing into the gathered group.
Police have yet to identify the device which exploded, or to clarify whether or not it was thrown from the speeding vehicle.
According to the State Department for Health, twelve out of the 41 injured remain in hospital. One person who received shrapnel wounds to the face and limbs is considered to be in the most serious condition.
The Portela samba school issued a statement saying, “The school is very distressed by what has happened and confirms its confidence in the authorities … that the episode will be clarified. The Presidency of the Portela samba school will closely monitor the investigation into this case.”
Read more (in Portguese).
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