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Man shoots at two, kills one in N. Athens: Police probed after alleged negligence

An Athens prosecutor has ordered a preliminary probe into allegations of police negligence and indifference regarding complaints made by the neighbors of a 40-year-old over his delinquent demeanor before he shot and killed a 43-year-old and injured another on Saturday in the northern suburb of Nea Erythraia.

The man shot at the two men who were fixing a natural gas supply at a home in the neighborhood with the injured one being a neigbhor.

An eyewitness told media that when she asked him What did he do? he responded They deserved it.

The man was arrested right after the crime and is being charged for the crimes of attempted and committed homicide in a row and in violation of the drugs law. The 40-year-old has been also prosecuted for the misdemeanors of carrying and using weapons.

In his family home, police found swords, weapons and bullets.

It was a common secret among the neighbors that the perpetrator had a “strange behavior” that was causing “fear” and neighbors reported that they had often seen him hanging dummies on the roof top of the home where he lived with his mother and that he was often shooting in the air, notes protothema.

The man had been previously hospitalized in a mental facility and was supposed to be on prescription medication.

The probe will try to ascertain whether these calls to the police were made and why authorities did not respond.

The perpetrator’s neighbors called the police because they saw him shooting on the roof on the day before the crime, notes kathimerini.

Absence of follow-up psychiatric care

Health experts criticized on television programs the practice of Greek mental health care to not perform the essential  follow-up when people with mental health issues are being discharged from psychiatric facilities.

Speaking to state broadcaster ERT, psychiatrist – psychotherapist Dimitris Papadimitriadis pointed out to the absence of “community mental health care” that would constitute of  weekly visits by specialists to people with mental disorders who had been discharged form facilities

Papadimitriadis stressed that there is no such care in Greece and that the families are being left alone with the patients who have received treatment iin facilities.

“The public system has been deforested by de-institutionalisation, reducing the capacity to accommodate people who do not comply with their medication or suffer from such severe mental disorders,” he added.

The usual practice is a monthly visit to a doctor for renewal of prescription medication.

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One comment

  1. Mental illness and weapons do not mix. Regardless of whether or not the patient takes his medication, the law should state explicitly that they are not allowed to be near firearms or weaponry. Families should also be warned and fined if there are weapons on the premises. Neighbors who see evidence of this should be able to report it.

    People with paranoid schizophrenia can have violent tendencies. Without weapons they make still beat or knife someone, but we have to start somewhere.