Two Ukrainian police officers have been detained outside Kiev accused of shooting a five-year-old boy while playing with their regulation pistol, Ukrainian media reports. Investigators add that the policemen were drunk at the time of the events, even though they were on duty.
The events took place on May 31 when the two agents were shooting at cans and bottles in the back garden of a house. The child was hit by a bullet in the head and died in the hospital three days later.
The officers initially reporting that an accidental fall caused the boy’s head wound.
This case has unleashed a wave of indignation in Ukraine, where hundreds of citizens have taken to the streets with flares and banners to demand the resignation of Interior Minister Arsen Avakov, and that the murder of the child does not go unpunished.
Newly elected President of Ukraine Vladimir Zelenski took time out of his first overseas trip to comment on the case, “I am sure that there will be political responsibility and criminal liability” he told Radio Free Europe in Brussels.
Earlier, in a Facebook post Zenksiy had written: “We will not soften. We will not try to hide this issue, this tragedy should become a lesson.”
The two officers, who have had their charges upgraded from hooliganism and inflicting bodily harm to premeditated murder, are being held in preventive detention for two months.