Police Investigate City Center Shootings (video)
Published: September 25, 2013 (Issue # 1779)
The police have launched a criminal investigation into a shooting in central St. Petersburg during the early hours of Saturday after a video of the incident made by a witness appeared on You Tube. The video showed a large number people running from the corner Dumskaya Ulitsa and Ulitsa Lomonosova, where many popular bars are located, including expat favorites Datscha and Fidel, toward Ulitsa Sadovaya. Shouts of insults and “Allah Akbar,” as well as multiple shots were heard on the video.
The YouTube user going under the alias copoka40a, who uploaded the clip, wrote that it documented an alleged attack on a bar’s security guards and clientele committed by no less than 25 men. Later, different people claimed on the web that those attacked used pneumatic weapons as well.
According to reports, the incident started near the rock-and-roll karaoke bar Poison at 2 Ulitsa Lomonosova. Some said that two visitors were denied entry and returned later with a group of supporters to take revenge.
On Saturday, the police reported that the shooting incident took place at 12:40 a.m., while later in the morning two calls from hospitals were received about two young men, one of whom was shot in the leg and the other in the chest from a pneumatic weapon. The report said both were intoxicated and released after being given medical treatment.
The police received another report on Saturday morning from the owner of a BMW who said his car’s back window had been shattered by a shot from a pneumatic weapon as he passed the site at the time of the incident.
The Central District police have combined all of these incidents into one investigation, according to the police report. The police said that videos from surveillance cameras were being analyzed and witnesses interviewed, but the attackers were yet to be identified and detained. The incident has been categorized as criminal misconduct, including a conspiracy or use of weapons, which is punishable by up to seven years in prison.
As media and blogs claimed the attackers were from the Caucasus, nationalist Nikolai Bondarik used the incident to urge people to attend a rally against “ethnic terror” and Governor Georgy Poltavchenko to be held at the Gostiny Dvor shopping mall near the site of the conflict at 7 p.m. Saturday, after a previously announced rally against “illegal migration” at Lomonosovskaya metro station, about a 15-minute metro ride away.
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