Cyprus Mail

Police chief orders probe into accident victim’s death (Update)

Police Chief Zacharias Chrysostomou

By Evie Andreou

POLICE Chief Zacharias Chrysostomou has ordered an administrative probe into the road accident last week in Deftera, near Nicosia, that led to the death of a 25-year-old Romanian man, police spokesman Andreas Angelides said on Monday.

The probe aims to discover whether the officers who investigated bear any responsibility as to the outcome, given they could not locate the victim immediately after the accident, called off the search and did not find the man until the next morning.

The 25-year-old was found dead on Friday morning in the yard of a house in Deftera. According to police sources, the man took a car on a test drive on Thursday afternoon, but never returned. Police said he had lost control of his car at around 10pm on Thursday night on the Palechori-Nicosia road and crashed into the wall of a house.

After the accident, police failed to find the man’s body in or near the car. CyBC said that the man’s autopsy, performed on Monday, indicated that he was alive after the crash, although it is as yet unknown for how long. The cause of death was hemorrhagic shock and liver rupture, caused by the crash.

The search had been called off after midnight due to poor weather conditions and no visibility as it was dark, and resumed on Friday morning, when he was found dead some distance from the overturned car.

Prior to these findings, investigations were underway to find whether the man was flung out of the car and killed due to the car crash, or whether, still alive, he got out of the car in search for help but died or fell unconscious before he could find any.

Among the questions, state broadcaster CyBC said, are why the search was called off before the driver was found, why was the Nicosia traffic police not informed and why it was initially filed as a road accident with only property damage.

Angelides told the Cyprus News Agency that the night of the accident, officers were searching for the man for three hours accompanied by his friends, his partner, but also the owner of the house.

“Through the probe, the questions asked are whether responsibilities should be attributed to those who handled the incident,” Angelides said.

He added that the state pathologist’s final report on the man’s death would be essential as regards the case.

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