Police shoot innocent car passenger during ATM robbery car chase
Nearly 150 ATMs have been blown up this year with the most recent incident, on Wednesday in Almada, ending with the Public Security Police shooting dead an innocent woman during a car chase.
This year alone, 149 ATMs have been attacked in Portugal, a figure now seized on by the media after the tragic accidental shooting this Wednesday morning in Pragal, Almada, when police mistakenly shot and killed a woman passenger in a Seat Leon which was mistaken for the get-away vehicle
The woman was hit in the neck by a bullet, later was assisted by the INEM and was rushed to the San José Hospital, but was dead on arrival.
Keen to make at least one arrest, the police saw the driver of the car fleeing and caught him. It turned out that he had no driving license. He was detained for driving without legal authorisation, for not stopping at a stop sign and for dangerous driving.
The car the police should have been chasing later was seized near the Alegro Shopping Center in Azeda, Setúbal.
ATM robberies are investigated by the Judiciary Police (PJ), which has been trying to identify the gangs involved but most robberies are targeted on ATMs in remote locations, leaving the police with few eye-witnesses and even fewer clues.
The choice of using inflammable gas to blow up ATMs has led to some dramatic explosions, often with extensive damage caused to the building in which the machine is housed.
Most robbers wear balaclavas to avoid recognition on CCTV recordings and escape before the police arrive.
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