Spike in violence during Mother’s Day in Colombia

World Today

Spike in violence during Mother's Day in Colombia

Mother’s Day is supposed to be a celebration of love, but in Colombia it means a higher incidence of violence.

It is one of the country’s most violent days of the year with high levels of homicides.

CGTN’s Michelle Begue reports from Bogota.

Spike in violence during Mother's Day in Colombia

Mother's Day is supposed to be a celebration of love, but in Colombia it means a higher incidence of violence. It is one of the country's most violent days of the year with high levels of homicides. CGTN's Michelle Begue reports from Bogota.

It is a rainy Sunday night in Bogota on what is often considered one of the most violent days in Colombia Mother’s Day.

“We patrol certain neighborhoods because historically we have seen that families gather for barbecues and lunches, so they drink alcohol and we start to see fights,” Officer Pacheco, a Bogota press officer said.

A man is being taken in for domestic violence against his partner. The police said he was a drunk man. Police officials said the rain has made it a slow night.

“We could say it is the effect of alcohol, family discussions, or melancholy because of a family member who has passed. Someone feels guilty and there is violence,” Colonel Cesar Castano of the Bogota Metropolitan police said.

To counter the violence, Bogota had 3000 more policemen to help patrol this weekend. The police are outside bars and clubs responding to fights and performing random background checks to make sure there are no illegal weapons.

In 2016, there were 17 homicides, an increase from 2015 and almost 4000 reports of violence according to Bogota’s police.

Piedad, a mother of two never imagined she would be a victim of domestic violence.

“We were sitting with our family celebrating, I asked a man to change the music, and my husband got jealous and began hitting me,” she said.

At the end of CGTN’s interview wither her, her husband verbally threatens her and her children in front of the police. The man it seems to be sobering up but shows no remorse for his actions.

Police officials tell us this goes far beyond the need to prohibit alcohol, that citizens need to learn how to celebrate, so that a day meant to celebrate love, doesn’t become a motive for hate.