The Sovetsky District Court of Nizhny Novgorod received a criminal case for examination on the merits with regard to former police officer of Police Department No 7 Pavel Bersenev who is charged with crime under item “a” part 3 of Article 286 of the Criminal Code of the RF (“Exceeding official authority using violence”). The main evidence in the case is the video footage of the camera which registered the moment of the blow. The case was sent to court after two months after its opening.
(Screenshot of video surveillance camera of Police Department No 7)
As we have previously reported, Elena Petrova from Nizhny Novgorod (the name and surname are changed – author’s comment) applied to the Committee for the Prevention of Torture asking for legal assistance. She reported that she had been violently detained in Nizhny Novgorod karaoke-café and taken to the police department of the Sovetsky district. There, according to her words, one of the policemen shouted at her in the course of the conversation, hit her in the face with his hand and pushed her to the wall.
In her explanation to the human rights defenders Elena reported that at night on 2 April of this year she was having a rest with friends at the karaoke-cafe. At some moment there began a fight between a young man from her company and some other guests on the dance-floor. Those present there tried to stop the fight and some later the policemen arrived to the cafe.
According to Elena, the policemen came to her purposefully and ordered her to come with them to the police department. She asked the policemen to explain to her the reason of their request, but they used physical strength and put her arms behind her back and handcuffed her. Due to that Elena suffered from severe physical pain (later the surgeon diagnosed “shoulder joints sprain”).
Petrova was taken to Police Department No. 7 of the Directorate of the Ministry of the Interior of Russia for Nizhny Novgorod.
According to Elena, in the department she was given some explanations to sign but they did not let her read them. After the detained person refused to sign the papers several times, the policeman quite abruptly changed the tone of the conversation into very aggressive one and said: “If you do not sign it now, I’ll give you some beating!”
– I said that I was not going to sign anything anyway. Immediately after that the policeman hit my face with the sharp of his hand, – Petrova remembers.
In the end, Elena signed the document without reading it. After that she was released and left the police department at about half past four in the morning. On the same day she came to the trauma center of city hospital No. 34, and on the next day she went to the surgeon at the place of her residence. As a result the doctor diagnosed that the victim had: “Soft tissue bruise on the face, and on the right and left forearms. Right and left shoulder joints sprain”.
On 10 April 2017 investigator from the investigating department of the Investigation Office of the Investigation Committee of the Russian Federation in Nizhny Novgorod region, Major of Justice Izverov initiated a criminal case against the police officer under item «а» Part 3 Article 286 of the Criminal Code of the RF (“Abuse of office with the use of violence”).
Preliminary investigation took about two months, and after the Prosecutor’s Office approved the indictment, on 2 June it was sent to the Sovetsky District Court of Nizhny Novgorod.
«Pavel Bersenev, charged with exceeding his official authority, at the present time is fired from the police; he does not admit his guilt, despite the availability of the video record from the police department, confirming the illegality of his actions. In the course of the legal proceedings we will be representing the interests of the victim”, – lawyer with the Committee for the Prevention of Torture Evgeny Chilikov comments.