Rio bullet: shot ‘aimed at police blimp’ but suspected gunfire heard at equestrian venue

  • Investigations into yesterday’s incident, in which a bullet (pictured below) pierced the plastic canvas tent roof of the equestrian media centre at the Rio Olympics, have gleaned that the target was the police blimp flying overhead.

    Rio Olympics bullet

    Rio Olympics bullet

    A second security briefing held by Rio 2016 communications director Mario Andrada said that the bullet “came from a community far from here”.

    “The ministry of defence have confirmed that the bullet was aiming at the police blimp, which carries surveillance equipment. Their findings were that the bullet arrived with low energy and speed, on a parabolic trajectory, aiming at the blimp.”

    Security stepped up in Deodoro

    Security forces have increased their levels of readiness and security in areas nearby the Deodoro Olympic venue and particularly in areas close to where the bullet was shot from, he added.

    “The security forces are using police blimps — which are bullet-proof — and drones, which carry cameras as part of the technology for the protection and security of the Games, which can monitor and record movements of crowds [pictured, top] as well as whatever people are doing in their communities.”

    A full report on the type of weapon and bullet with be available in the next 24 hours.

    Mr Andrada sought to reiterate that the attack was not aimed at the Olympics or the media here to cover the events. However, the blimps and drones are only flying as a result of the Olympics.

    “We don’t know precisely where the bullet came from yet, but technical experts will be able to pinpoint exactly where it comes from.”

    The cameras on the blimps should enable authorities to work out exactly where the bullet originated from.

    Continued below…

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    “We don’t know which favela it came from,” added Mr Andrada. “The authorities have the means to know who fired the shot, but information about who they believe did it is confidential until they can actually do something in the area to prevent it.”

    Loud bangs heard at venue

    Further gunfire-like sounds were heard in the Deodoro equestrian venue today, but Mr Andrada could not offer an explanation of their provenance.

    “We have heard reports that people heard loud bangs today,” he said. “But we have no explanations as yet. We will go after this information. We still do not know if there is live fire going on in the area.

    “Our first goal is to protect, and the second to keep everyone informed, but the security forces are not releasing any information until they are absolutely sure.”

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