Czech Republic: 30 people rally in support of crossbow shooter
Last Saturday about 30 people gathered beneath the chateau in the Czech town of Chotěbuz, where promoters of the Workers Social Justice Party (Dělnická strana sociální spravedlnosti - DSSS) convened a demonstration in support of Jaroslav Šebesta, who has been charged with committing grievous bodily harm result in a fatality. At the end of April, Šebesta shot 39-year-old Martin Hospodi, a Romani man, in the head with a crossbow.
Šebesta claims he was just defending his property and that he did not aim at the head of the man he perceived as a trespasser, but at his car. News server Romea.cz has reported previously on the various versions of the case as described by the shooter and and eyewitness. The case is still being investigated, which complicates our getting further official statements on it.
For the DSSS, however, the incident is just yet another scandal they can exploit in order to score political points. Police patrols in Chotěbuz were reinforced to deal with Saturday's rally, raising the question of how much money the party's public meetings are costing the taxpayer.
At the rally in Chotěbuz, DSSS representatives demanded that Šebesta's crime be reclassified as necessary self-defense and that the charges against him be dropped. Šebesta did not attend the rally, but issued a statement saying that he values the party's expression of support, just as he appreciates the roughly 600 signatures on a petition in his defense that has been organized by people in his home town.
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