x

Society

Ambush Slaying of Woman Outside Athens Police Station Draws Furor

ATHENS – The stabbing death of a 28-year-old woman outside a police station allegedly by her ex-boyfriend – after she was refused an escort home – has led to an investigation into the failure to protect her.

Nor she nor the reported attacker, 39, were named but reports said a restraining order had been issued against him in 2020 after she said he abused and raped her, no explanation why he wasn’t charged.

The incident immediately led the major opposition SYRIZA to reiterate its push to have femicide considered a category of murder with a long line of women in Greece in recent years being harassed, threatened, beaten, sexually assaulted and killed.

Citizen Protection Minister Michalis Chrysochoidis said there would be a “full, in-depth” probe into the killing that happened only a few dozen yards from the police station in the neighborhood of Aghii Anargyri.

The man police said stabbed her was taken under guard to a psychiatric hospital after it was reported he also stabbed himself, no report on how serious his injuries were nor why he attacked her so close to a police station.

“What matters now is to fully investigate the incident … and see what the police did or didn’t do,” Chrisochoidis told state ERT television. “This must be done in a very few days, hours even,” he said.

A police statement the victim visited the precinct with a friend and reported that her former boyfriend was loitering outside her home and that she asked for a patrol car to take her home but it was refused because she wouldn’t press charges and was told to phone the police emergency line – although she was talking to an officer already.

The statement said she made the call on her way out of the precinct. But “while she was talking to a police operator she was suddenly attacked by her former partner, who fatally injured her with a knife.”

She was reportedly on the phone with the 100 emergency dispatch operator asking to be taken home when she was attacked by the assailant who followed her to the station on a motorcycle and went after her.

Greek President Katerina Sakellaropoulou said she was shocked. “The murder … yet another femicide, shakes and angers us,” she said in a statement. “It shows … the urgent responsibility authorities have to fight gender-based violence and crime.”

The police statement said members of the force are trained to respond to gender-based violence, following protocols “that are constantly updated,” after the New Democracy government had upgraded protections for women.

“It must be examined to what extent these (protocols) were followed,” Chrisichoidis said. He added that while he supported the criminal code reform requested by opposition parties, that should follow a “serious and calm debate” by legal experts.

It was the sixth femicide reported so far in Greece this year after 15 in 2023, not counting how many women were raped, harassed, threatened, stalked, or feared for their lives but didn’t go to police or courts for protection.

“He attacked her with a lot of force and started striking her with the knife and I started shouting,” said her male friend who had accompanied her to the police station and witnessed the murder.

“She told me that the police told her to press charges, but she didn’t want to and would call 100 to have the police escort her home… I understood that the officers were urging her to file a lawsuit but she said she was not afraid of him and did not want to file a lawsuit,” the 37-year-old reportedly told police.

According to the forensic report, she received five stab wounds, three in the back. It wasn’t said if police came out of the station or how the attacker was apprehended although the incident raised fury again.

The New Democracy government said there would be a thorough investigation to determine whether all necessary protocols were followed by the police after the case raised furor again.

“Every aspect of this horrific murder will be examined thoroughly, and the case will undergo a comprehensive investigation to determine whether all necessary actions were taken by the police and whether protocols were followed,” government spokesman Pavlos Marinakis told Antenna TV.

When questioned about potential errors in the handling of the case, Marinakis expressed that “the 28-year-old woman undoubtedly should have been saved,” although it wasn’t said earlier what those were.

“It’s crucial to investigate whether protocols were adhered to, but in life, some matters transcend protocols. Even if protocols were followed, more could have been done,” he said, with no report who would investigate the police.

As for SYRIZA leader Stefanos Kasselakis’ insistence for a legal recognition of femicide, Marinakis said, “From a social standpoint, we fully endorse the term ‘femicide.’” But he said the law already provides a maximum penalty of a life sentence for those crimes.

“So what does SYRIZA propose? Are they suggesting a distinct treatment for femicides? Are they advocating for a return to the death penalty?” he asked. SYRIZA didn’t explain how making femicide a separate category of murder would affect sentencing.

RELATED

ATHENS - After inviting foreign investors to qualify for Golden Visas by buying properties, Greece is looking at limiting how many nights apartments and homes can be used for short-term rentals, which spiked prices and is drying up the market.

Top Stories

Columnists

A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

Video

The 30th Κalamata International Dance Festival Runs July 12-21

KALAMATA – Synonymous with the evolution of contemporary dance in Greece, the Kalamata Dance Festival celebrates 30 years of continuous presence this year, having established itself as the premier contemporary dance event in the country and one of the most significant dance events in Europe.

Permanently Unique Group announces their third foray into unique cuisine in Manchester’s Spinningfields shopping district.

NEW YORK (AP) — Manhattan prosecutors told a judge Wednesday they are evaluating more claims of sexual misconduct made against Harvey Weinstein and could potentially seek a new indictment against him before his scheduled retrial on rape and sexual assault charges.

NEW YORK – Greek-American Stratis Morfogen’s Diner 24, 283 3rd Avenue in Manhattan’s Gramercy neighborhood, was featured in the New York Post for hiring pastry chefs from an untapped demographic – yiayias and church ladies.

BROOKLYN – The Greek School of Plato in Brooklyn, NY is creating a full-day preschool program for children aged 2 to 4 of all nationalities.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. [email protected]

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.