Comandante Filipe Silva may be looking for a new job as he was caught on film after yesterday’s Vitória de Guimarães vs Benfica football match, laying into a father with a riot baton and punching the man’s father in the face, twice in what media across the country has called an 'unprovoked attack.'
José de Magalhães from Matosinhos had gone to the 0-0 match with his two sons, 9 and 13, along with his elderly father and all were held inside the stadium with other fans after the match had ended due to security risks. Benfica had beaten Guimarães and won the championship, the crowd was celebrating and close to losing control.
After 45 minutes of enforced detention inside the ground, the father made his way to a closed exit and told police outside the stadium that his children were panicking and suffocating in the densely packed crowd. The family was allowed through and into the fresh air.
The relieved Magalhães family was approached by PSP Comandante Filipe Silva who asked them how they had managed to get out of the stadium which was in lock down and why they were exiting in that particular area?
A frank exchange of views seems to have taken place. When the policeman asked why Magalhães has taken kids to such a highly charged game things got worse and after an exchange of words, the policeman lost his cool and punched the father in the face, and then turned and also punched the older man twice in the face. Silva then whippeds out his riot truncheon and hits the prostrate Magalhães as another officer rushes in.
It’s all recorded, filmed by a Correio da Manhã TV camera man, luckily for the victim as otherwise it would be the policeman’s word against the family’s.
José de Magalhães was arrested and carted off to the police station, released hours later at around midnight.
Magalhães admits to having told the officer that in his opinion the police were not doing a good job as the stifling conditions inside the stadium were putting many children at risk.
The reaction from this experienced officer has been condemned by national media as completely over the top.
The Ministry of Internal Affairs has announced that there will be an inquiry into the incident and disciplinary proceedings taken against the officer, having reviewed the video evidence.
The PSP officer later made an allegation that Magalhães spat in his face, a claim emphatically denied by the accused, and that Magalhães knew he was being filmed and took advantage of the situation.
José de Magalhães, was heard in the Court of Guimarães this morning and said that he always had the image that the PSP was there to defend the public, not launch attacks on them.
He added “I was desperate for the safety of the kids. We were already half an hour, three quarters of an hour, standing inside the stadium.
"We had the understanding of four policemen at the stadium door who let us out, but then Comandante Filipe Silva came over and asked what we were doing there."
The Matosinhos businessman replied to the policeman that the authorities were doing a "poor job" for not letting people leave the stadium.
Benfica’s 0-0 draw meant the team won the national championship, triggering celebrations up and down the country, some of which turned violent.
The football team was paraded in Lisbon where tens of thousands of fans had gathered to celebrate the championship victory but some soon were clashing with police, resulting in injuries and arrests. The police "detained 26 people for various reasons," six in Guimarães and 13 in Lisbon, during the celebrations.