in Latest High Profile Suicide Attempt Brazilian MAN SETS BUS ON FIRE, STABS HIMSELF
Several highly publicized suicide attempts in Brazil over the last week have become the latest manifestation in an ongoing mental health epidemic in the country.
A Rio de Janeiro man stabbed himself Thursday after attempting to set fire to a bus in the famous Copacabana district.
According to passengers the man removed a bottle of liquid from his bag and sprayed it on the seats. After igniting the liquid, he exited the bus and stabbed himself multiple times. The bus driver managed to contain the fire with an onboard fire extinguisher, and all six passengers safely evacuated the vehicle.
Police identified the individual as Edivaldo Ribeiro de Farias and said that he had a history of violence including accusations of attempted murder and threats made against his partner of 15 years.
Video filmed by a passerby shortly after the event showed Farias laying bloody on Copacabana’s Barata Ribeiro street with at least two knives penetrating his abdomen. At the time of the video, he is still alive and moving. Authorities said that he was rescued to a local hospital but did not have information as to his condition.
The attempted suicide comes just days after Brazil and the world watched as Willian Augusto da Silva held 39 bus passengers hostage with a fake gun and threats that he would set fire to the vehicle. Da Silva was shot by a police marksman from the city’s BOPE special operations unit. The commander of the team, Lieutenant Coronel Maurío Nunes, said Wednesday that Da Silva most likely committed the hijacking in the hopes that police would kill him. The situation is often called “suicide by cop.”
Meanwhile, on Tuesday a woman from Patos de Minas arrived home to find her husband and son dead in an apparent murder-suicide. According to authorities, 34-year-old Evandro Santos de Araújo killed two-year-old Joao and then himself in revenge against his wife who was considering a divorce.
The three events point towards the growing suicide rate in Brazil in recent years. Well, most countries have shown a reduction in the number of self-inflicted deaths, Brazil has experienced a shocking upward trend in people taking their own lives. According to researchers, the trend is highest in adolescents who are suffering as much as a 24% increase between 2006 and 2015.
The causes behind the increase in suicides are not entirely known, but researchers said that social changes resulting in greater isolation, the popularization of the internet, and a lack of public resources for mental health issues are likely to play a role.