Name UnknownAge 20-32
31 May 2021
São Joaquim de Bicas, Minas Gerais (Brazil)
The victim was one of 7 LGBT+ people who reportedly died by suicide in São Joaquim de Bicas Penitentiary between January and September 2021.
According to Observatório Trans, 3 of the victims who passed away between January and May were trans women. In total one person died in January, one in April, two in May, one in June, one in July and one in September.
A morbid suicide calendar has been registered since the beginning of the year within the LGBTQI+ wing of the São Joaquim de Bicas Penitentiary, in the metropolitan region of Minas Gerais. The cases began in January when a person took their own life. The same thing happened in April, and there were two more suicidess in May, another in June, the sixth in July and another one recorded last Saturday. Officially, it is not known what led gay [and trans] detainees to commit suicide.
The Civil Police has not yet completed their investigations. After five suicides, the Public Defender of Minas Gerais filed a lawsuit asking for urgent improvements to the unit, called Professor Jason Soares Albergaria. The Minas Gerais Court of Justice (TJMG) accepted the request, and the state government guarantees that it is taking appropriate measures. After the action of the Public Defender's Office, two other suicides and six suicide attempts were recorded. As soon as the deaths became apparent the Secretariat of Justice and Public Security (Sejusp) determined that the unit should be dedicated exclusively to LGBTQI+ inmates. The penitentiary currently houses 396 inmates.
The deaths involve people between 20 and 32 years of age and are accompanied by several complaints by family members and ex-detainees. There are stories of abuse, precarious medical care, food and hygiene conditions. For the Public Defender's Office, there was an omission, in addition to the suspicion that some cases are disguised homicides.
“The agents make fun of us, they treat us like animals. I still have nightmares,” says a young [trans woman] who was only inside for three days. Cristina Oliveira, a [trans woman] who spent about six years in the penitentiary, said the daily torment resulted in her partner's death. He was also in prison and committed suicide after an alleged crisis.