Palma was gunned down by two unidentified men on a motorcycle outside his home in Miguel Pereira, a suburb to the south of Rio de Janeiro, and died at the scene, according to news reports. Palma was the owner of the local weekly newspaper Panorama Regional, which was circulated in several nearby municipalities.
News reports said the paper had frequently alleged corruption in the local government. A friend of the publisher told the daily O Globo that Palma had received threats but had not taken them seriously. The journalist's wife also said he had received threats but said she did not know who had made them, according to news reports.
In an issue of Panorma Regional published after Palma's death, his colleague and friend Belisa Ribeiro wrote that he had told her he received threats but did say in relation to which report. In the article and on her Facebook page, Ribeiro said it did not appear that Palma had had been investigating a big political scandal, but that that he had regularly denounced typical small town problems, such as faulty infrastructure and negligent local policies. If this was all it took to get him killed, she wrote, "[then] I am scared."
Military police captain Coronel César Augusto de Souza told local journalists that authorities were looking into a possible link to the newspaper's reports but that all possible motives were being investigated.