In the early morning hours of January 19th, 2015, Ricardo dos Santos was shot in the back by a military police officer named Paulo Mota Brentano. He died in hospital the next day. After nearly a year of waiting, Brentano has just been sentenced to 22 years in prison by a Brazilian court.
According to witnesses, do Santos approached Brentano to ask him to move his car, which was blocking something he needed to work on. After he asked the men in the car to move, an argument broke out. Ricardo ended up with two bullets in his back, one that perforated his spleen, pancreas, liver, and intestine, while the second bullet lodged in the fifth vertebra in the lower back. A day and four surgeries later, Ricardo died in hospital. The country was outraged. Brentano immediately claimed self-defense, saying dos Santos had a machete.
Brentano’s trial, which took two days, wrapped up late Friday afternoon. He was sentenced to 22 years for the murder, although according to Waves, the prosecution initially requested 34 years. As well as the 22 years, Brentano got 8 months for driving drunk on the day of the murder.
The defense can still appeal the decision, despite the fact that Brentano’s claim that dos Santos was threatening him with a machete was deemed false by a jury.
Ricardo’s mother, Luciane dos Santos, was there for the sentencing. “It’s a sense of relief because that’s what we’ve been looking for,” she said on Hora de Santa Catarina. “And, thank God, we got what we wanted. The first part we know is still a wound, it will never heal.”