The mayor of Porto has received a “worrying set of reports” from residents, concerned about violence and contempt in various parts of the city, especially at night. “We warned that a tragedy could happen. And now it really happened,” he told PÚBLICO, commenting on the death of a 23-year-old young man this morning after an attack in front of a bar on Rua Passos Manuel.
The phenomenon, which began to be noticed after the discontinuation, in 2020, led Rui Moreira to write to the Minister of Internal Administration, Eduardo Cabrita, in October of that year. And even António Costa, a few weeks later. But neither letter had any response. The city was witnessing the “concentration in public areas of adolescents and young people with the objective of socialization accompanied by the consumption of alcohol”, he reported to the prime minister, in a letter to which PÚBLICO had access. The case, he continued, asking for government intervention, “represents a public order problem that could assume significant proportions.”
Residents, who contact the mayor through his Facebook page, mainly report cases of groups with violent behavior, often drunk, existence of brawls and a lot of noise. Because of this, the municipality came to “enclose” the Virtudes zone. But only temporarily. “The solution cannot be to block the city.”
For the mayor, recently elected for the third term, the phenomenon of bottle it returned in force after a phase where people were forced to be closed. With the interruption, during the pandemic, of the “mediation” that the municipality had applied in the movida zone, the situation became “very serious”.
The solution, argues Rui Moreira, must pass through human and technological means. And the two have been missing, regrets. “The Public Security Police does not have enough staff or conditions” to monitor the city’s activity and this problem will be greater in the future: “There is a lack of training to compensate for the agents’ retirement. O stock number of agents has been reduced and will continue to be reduced.” To counteract this, the mayor has already asked Lisbon to install video surveillance in the city. Response? Did not have.
“The police identified the city center as the epicenter of a crime phenomenon that justifies video surveillance. The chamber is available to pay for everything and has the operations center ready. We are waiting for the green light from Lisbon to proceed. There is inaction on this matter”
Rui Moreira says he does not have access to numbers on crime in the city. But he is certain: “The feeling of insecurity is evident. That worries me more than the statistics.”
The young man who was attacked at the door of a bar in downtown Porto, in the early hours of this Sunday, ended up losing his life at the Hospital de Santo António where he was assisted, according to PÚBLICO learned from police sources. The suspect will be of French nationality and was already, this Monday, present to a criminal investigation judge, after having been detained by the PSP, which reported the case to the Judiciary Police.