Zach Kostopoulos died of a heart attack, likely caused by trauma during the beating, a pathologist who performed an autopsy on the 33-year-old LGBT activist told a court in Athens on Tuesday.
The trial began with two civilians and four police officers on trial.
“I have seen beatings where a person has a heart attack and dies, although this does not happen often. However, we have not established any other pathological reasons, ”- pathologist doctor Nikos Kalogrias.
He stressed that “the checks ruled out other reasons that could lead to this.” (The fact that Zach Kostopoulos was HIV positive, took drugs, and was in a condition “withdrawal“, for some reason the expert did not include in the possible causes of death. Editor’s note).
Kalogris’s testimony challenged the defense’s allegations that Zak Kostopoulos might have been under the influence of any drug or underlying medical condition that had contributed to his death.
After the show beating videos a lawyer for the owner of a jewelry store asked the medical examiner which beat triggered the heart attack. The pathologist replied, “All the blows, all 23, but I can’t count them exactly.”
When the expert said that he could not know which injuries were more or less involved in triggering the victim’s stress mechanism and, accordingly, the heart attack, the defense accused the witness of bringing the defendants to court.
The “attack” of the defense caused a violent reaction from the pathologist, heating up the situation in the courtroom. “I feel that an apology is expected of me for the autopsy results … We are doing our job,” the investigator said.
The judge announced a short break until the tension subsided.
Dialogue between the forensic scientist and the defense of the accused
Witness: We cannot quantify which injuries more or less affected the outcome.
Defense Counsel: There are six people on trial for what you said.
Witness: We are doing our job. Cancel what you said. In all cases, we do our job the same way we do every day. Are they the accused because of me? In twenty-two years, I have never heard of a medical examiner defending the accused while doing his job. This also makes an impression on these people. You insulted me. I’m right … and I’m angry. Are you saying that the medical examiner made them accused?
Civil suit spokesman: “It was their actions that made them defendants.”
Videos and photographs of the September 22, 2018 incident showed the owner of a jewelry store on Gladstonos Street and his neighbor, a real estate agent, beat Zak Kostopoulos, and police officers who arrived at their call brutally treated the victim as he lay on the sidewalk, badly injured. and dying.
The trial postponed until November 26
We will remind, on September 21, 2018 in the center of Athens, on Glastonos Street, an incident occurred that led to the death of LGBT activist Zak Kostopoulos. The police deny the charges against them, claiming that they never beat Kostopoulos. They were only doing their duty to detain a man who, according to the store owner, was listed as a robber. He “defended” himself with a long piece of glass, and then tried to escape.
According to the conclusion of the medical examination, Zak Kostopoulos died on September 21, 2018 on his way to the hospital from blood loss, heart failure and painful shock, which led to myocardial infarction. The causes of death were caused by the brutal beating of Kostopoulos by a jeweler and his friend (from a nearby store), brutal detention by police officers, as well as numerous cuts from broken window glass, according to the final opinion of the forensic experts, published on Monday 19 November 2018.
Previous toxicological tests showed that Zak Costopoulos was not under the influence of drugs, and only minor traces of alcohol were traced in his blood. However, the examination data does not deny that the deceased was in a state withdrawal syndrome (withdrawal). For this conclusion, it was enough to watch the video of how Kostopoulos behaved, and not to the examination data.
It is worth noting that the public was waiting for the results for almost a month and a half, despite the fact that even the most difficult examination of this kind takes a maximum of several days. In this regard, there are rumors that the reason for the delay was pressure from supporters of the LGBT community in order to arrange a show trial.
It can be considered that they are trying to make a Greek version of Floyd out of Kostopoulos.
Read more in the publication “Six accused in the dock for the death of Zak Kostopoulos “