HFHR intervenes in case of Austrian’s death in police custody
HFHR has intervened in the case of a national of Austria who died at the First Police Station in Częstochowa.
Herbert M. was arrested and brought to the station. He was accompanied by his wife, who informed police officers that her husband had suffered a heart attack in the past. The man collapsed while taking a breathalyser test and an ambulance was called. A doctor who arrived at the scene with the ambulance crew pronounced M. dead.
The HFHR intervened in the case and sent a letter to the District Prosecutor’s Office in Lubliniec, in which the Foundation reminded that police officers assume responsibility for the life and bodily integrity of an arrested (or detained) person in their custody. “Each case of a fatality in police custody must be thoroughly investigated”, says Adam Klepczyński, a lawyer working with the HFHR. “According to the jurisprudence of the ECtHR, criminal proceedings in cases of a loss of life must be effective, which means that they must be conducted in a way that enables determination of facts and, if a need arises, prosecution and punishment of persons guilty of any illegal conduct”, explains Piotr Kubaszewski, member of the HFHR legal team.
The HFHR asked the District Prosecutor’s Office in Lubliniec for information about the inquiry pending in the case and regular updates on the status of the proceedings.