Last Wednesday night (21), Leandro Mendes Pereira, 39, broke into his ex-partner’s house, in the Venda Nova region, in Belo Horizonte, and kept her 7-year-old son and brother. of creation of the woman, a young man of 23 years, hostages.
The private prison only ended about 16 hours later, when an elite sniper from the Military Police (PM) fired a shot and hit the kidnapper.
Here’s what we know so far about the case:
When did the kidnapping start?
At around 6 pm on Wednesday (21), Leandro Mendes Pereira, 39, broke into the house of his ex-partner in the Parque São Pedro neighborhood, in the Venda Nova region, in Belo Horizonte.
The 25-year-old woman managed to escape with the help of a neighbor. She was accompanied by her 23-year-old stepbrother and her 7-year-old son. The two were surrendered by the suspect.
Agents from the Special Operations Battalion (BOPE) went to the scene on Wednesday night to start negotiations with Leandro.
What would have motivated the suspect?
Witnesses said that Leandro and his ex-partner had separated two months ago, and the conflict began because the man did not accept the end of the relationship.
How did the suspect act during the kidnapping?
According to the Military Police, on Wednesday night, Leandro was “more calm”, but, during the night, he became more excited.
Early on Thursday morning, the man began threatening the hostages with death. He even pointed the gun at the boy’s head and said they would have to “search for his body on top of the child’s body”.
During the action, Leandro exchanged messages with family members. In conversation with a relative, he said: “I came here to die.”
Suspect exchanged messages with family members – Photo: Personal Archive
The suspect also sent messages to the father of the 7-year-old boy who was being held hostage.
“The business is not good in here, no. I have a revolver full of bullets and I will not feel sorry for using any misfortune”, he wrote.
The kidnapper also spoke about the police action at the scene. “They (the police) are thinking I’m silly. I paid eight years in jail, their trickery in going up won’t even give me time to go up. I can see the whole house,” he said.
Kidnapper sent audios to boy held hostage
Leandro said that he would only release the hostages if his ex-companion entered the residence.
He also wanted the password to the woman’s cell phone, which he discovered on his own Thursday morning.
How did the kidnapping end?
After 16 hours of negotiation, around 10:15 am on Thursday (22), the kidnapper was shot by a sniper, a sniper of the Military Police. The child and youth were then taken out of the house. The boy was taken to his parents, who were waiting for him in a police car.
Leandro was taken in serious condition to Hospital João XXIII.
According to the PM, the use of the sniper was necessary because the negotiation process with the suspect “did not evolve”.
“There was this real threat, he had external information from his ex-wife that made him even more nervous and directly threatened the life of this minor. We used the sniper. We are very sorry, it is not the outcome we would like, but it was the possible outcome to save the lives of these hostages,” said Major Layla Brunnela, a spokeswoman for the corporation.
Has the suspect been arrested before?
Yup. Leandro Mendes Pereira has already been arrested for the murder of an ex-girlfriend. He committed the crime because he didn’t accept the end of the relationship.
According to the Military Police (PM) report, since the end of the relationship with the victim, Leandro sent letters with threats. Dissatisfied with the end of the relationship, he tried to asphyxiate his ex and, seeing that she was still alive, he hanged her with her bra. After murdering her, he even put a dead mouse in her mouth.
According to the Minas Gerais Court of Justice (TJMG), Leandro was arrested in the act on June 26, 2008. In 2011, he was sentenced to 14 years in prison. In June 2016, he went to the home regime and remained in that condition until November of the same year, when he obtained the benefit of parole. In February of this year, the sentence was served and extinguished.
What is the suspect’s condition?
Hospital João XXIII does not report the health status of patients. Police also did not give details about the case.