Czech President believes police on death of Stanislav Tomáš, has no reason to doubt the conclusions of the investigation into their actions
Czech President Miloš Zeman has said he has no reason to doubt the findings of the internal investigation into the intervention by police against Stanislav Tomáš in Teplice, who died thereafter, and that the Council of Europe, which has called for a thorough investigation of the incident, should concern itself with something else. He made the comments during a particular program on the CNN Prima News channel (Partie Terezie Tománkové).
Police are insisting the death of Mr Tomáš was unrelated to their intervention. However, more and more questions are being raised about the case.
For example, despite the fact that police reported from the beginning that Mr Tomáš did not collapse until he was already in the ambulance called to the scene, during a press conference on Thursday Jaromír Kníže, head of the Ústecký Regional Police Directorate, said in response to a direct question that he is unable to say when it was that Mr Tomáš lost consciousness. Eyewitnesses who filmed the intervention using their mobile phones have also been alleging that police later forced them to delete the footage.
The police have called those allegations absurd and have also said they have no video footage of the intervention other than the bystander videos that have already been published by the media. "I have familiarized myself with the opinion of the police investigation and as a person who trusts the police I have no reason whatsoever to doubt the findings of that investigation," the Czech President said to CNN Prima News.
"The Council of Europe quite frequently interferes in a variety of matters and this is no exception," the Czech President also said. Police in Teplice intervened one week ago after a street brawl between two men resulted in damage to parked cars.
Stanislav Tomáš, a 46-year-old man whom police found already lying on the ground and then proceeded to further subdue so they could arrest him, died shortly thereafter. The police initially claimed Mr Tomáš died in the ambulance that had been called to the scene, but at Thursday's press conference they said he died in the hospital.
Support for the officers has been expressed by Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (ANO), Czech Interior Minister Jan Hamáček (Czech Social Democratic Party - ČSSD), and Czech Police President Jan Švejdar. The General Inspectorate of the Security Forces has also said that based on the current evidence, they do not see the police as having committed a crime.
In addition to the Council of Europe, the Czech branch of Amnesty International has also called for a thorough investigation of the incident and said the intervention was brutal and unlawful. The head of the Central Council of German Sinti and Roma, Romani Rose, has called the intervention by the Czech Police in Teplice abhorrent, brutal, and inhumane.
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