LA PAZ – An 18-year-old man accused of rape was lynched by a mob in the central Bolivian city of Quillacollo, police said.
Emigio Negrete was attacked by the mob around 5:30 a.m. Sunday, the FELCC law enforcement agency’s commander in Cochabamba province, Col. Carlos Quiroga, told Efe.
About 40 people grabbed Negrete, tied him to an electric pole and beat him for allegedly raping a woman.
FELCC officers managed to rescue the teenager and take him to a hospital, where he died a few hours later, Quiroga said.
Lynchings are common in Bolivia, especially in the Andean region, because of a lack of confidence in the police or an absence of authorities.
Residents of some communities hang dolls from light poles as a warning to criminals.
Some groups say lynchings are an example of the “community justice” traditionally meted out in Indian communities that exist on the margins of state institutions.
President Evo Morales’s administration has condemned lynchings even though it promoted the institutionalization of community justice in the constitution that took effect in February 2009. EFE