18 June 2007, Yoshkar-Ola (Republic of Mari-El)
The inquest of witnesses under the criminal case against Sergey Pchelnikov, a policeman of the central police station of the Department of Internal Affairs of Yoshkar-Ola, was finished in the Yoshkar-Ola City Court. The policeman is accused of abuse of official power associated with the use of violence (Article 286 §3 of the RF Criminal Code). Mr. Pchelnikov pleaded guilty. The next hearing is set for 27 June 2007.
According to the investigation on the night of 12 to 13 December 2004 minors Andrey Aplekaev and Denis Darovskikh were in a local disco club where a policeman out of uniform came up to them and suggested them going out. The boys refused. Then the policeman disappeared and in ten minutes returned with two policemen in uniform. He pushed the boys out by force. Andrey and Denis showed no resistance. In the street the policeman without any explanations slapped Mr. Aplekaev on his face and kicked him in the groin. He also kicked Mr. Darovskikh in the groin and on the kidneys.
After that the boys were taken to the central police station of Yoshkar-Ola. There the policeman leaned Mr. Aplekaev against the wall and four times kicked him in the groin. Mr. Aplekaev was left in the corridor and Mr. Darovskikh was taken to one of the rooms. Being left alone Mr. Aplekaev managed to call his father and tell him that he was being beaten and asked him to come over.
Mr. Darovskikh was also beaten in the room. In particular, according to him, the policeman at first degraded him, requiring him to kneel, and then kicked him on the face what made Mr. Darovskikh fall down on the floor. After that the policeman hit the boy with his head against the wall. Then the policeman took Mr. Darovskikh to the toilet to wash his face as the boy was covered with blood. After that the policeman brought Mr. Aplekaev to the room and did the same to him. The policeman beat the boy on the face and head with his arms and legs, handcuffs and a police baton. Then the policeman left the boys and went out without composing any detention protocols. Some time later the boys were released home. According to the medical reports Mr. Aplekaev got a concussion of the brain and other bodily injuries. Mr. Darovskikh was diagnosed with contusions of the bridge of the nose, parietal bone and other injuries. They boys reported the matter to the prosecutor’s office but it refused to open a criminal case against the policeman.
A partner of the Public Verdict Foundation – the Yoshkar-Ola City Human Rights NGO “Man and Law” carried out a public investigation into the incident. Human rights defenders managed to have a criminal case initiated. In should be mentioned that it took the prosecution service a year to open a criminal case. Human rights defenders from Yoshkar-Ola in cooperation with the NN Committee Against Torture and the Public Verdict Foundation provide the victims with necessary legal and other support.