The number of violent deaths registered during 2016 in Brazil reached 61,600, a 4.7% increase compared to the previous year. This works out to seven people murdered per hour, on average, throughout the country, according to data from the Brazilian Forum on Public Safety released this week.
The data is compiled by the forum, an organization that is composed of specialists from the area and is based upon information supplied by public safety and security offices and police forces from the different states of Brazil.
The average annual rate for violent deaths in Brazil is 29.9 murders per 100,000 inhabitants.
The criteria for violent deaths was determined by the entity in order standardize information from the different states and includes homicides, robberies resulting in death, bodily injury followed by death and deaths resulting from police action.
Violence has spread throughout the whole country. It isn't limited to the bigger states or to an only region, said the forum's President, Renato Sérgio de Lima.
The record number of deaths was registered against the backdrop of a severe economic situation. There has been a significant reduction in investments in public safety and security by the Federal Government, States and Municipalities.
The total amount spent on the area in 2016 was R$ 81 billion (US$ 24.6 billion), a decrease of 3% compared to 2015.
Collateral effects of the public safety and security scenario are confrontations and deaths involving the police. The number of people killed during police operations reached the highest number ever recorded by the entity: 4,224 cases, an increase of 27% compared to 2015.
The number of civil and military police who were homicide victims themselves also increased considerably.