The wounds suffered by a 17-year-old who was arrested following a car chase in Ypsonas were not caused by gun shots, according to Limassol police spokesperson Lefteris Kyriakou.
On Wednesday at around midnight, police were called to manage an escalating fight in the Ypsonas area, where a group of youths, brawling with sticks, bats and rocks, had set on fire rubbish bins.
Two patrol cars and the fire service sped to the scene where, shortly upon arrival, police said they were met with hostility and a Molotov cocktail was thrown, setting fire to one of the patrol cars, damaging its roof and headlights.
During the incident, police noticed a car behind the damaged vehicle speeding off and pursued it, attempting to halt its course by firing warning shots. The driver did not stop and continued driving recklessly, despite police firing a second round of shots at the car’s tyres. The unknown suspect initially managed to escape.
Police eventually identified the vehicle as driven by a 17-year-old and belonging to one of the youth’s family members, and located it in an open area near his residence.
The minor was transferred to Limassol general hospital, suffering from a wound to his right cheek, which he claimed was caused by a police bullet. The doctor on duty reported a 2cm abrasion with no foreign material lodged in the seventeen-year-old’s wound. The youth was discharged and has been summoned to present himself for questioning at a later time.
On Wednesday afternoon, Kyriakou told the Cyprus News Agency that the wounds were not caused by bullets, but were most likely a result of the chase.
He also added that, although the 17-year-old is currently in custody, he is yet to be formally arrested.
“Police are trying to secure an arrest warrant against him, as his actions put his life and the lives of other people at risk,” he said, referring both to his escape by car and his use of a Molotov cocktail.
“It is not the first time that authorities are met with severe hostility by young people living in the area. People need to remember that police officers have families that expect them to return home safely at the end of the day.
“The incident in Ypsonas could have had much more serious consequences,” Kyriakou concluded.
Police impounded the vehicle used by the 17-year-old to escape from the authorities and the case is under ongoing investigation.