Skip to comments.Ukraine's Security Chief Says Ex-Official Killed Himself (shot twice in the head)
Posted on 03/05/2005 5:31:43 PM PST by jb6
OSCOW, March 5 - The chief of Ukraine's security service said Saturday that the country's former interior minister, Yuri F. Kravchenko, had shot himself twice in the head on Friday, refuting speculation that he had been killed by someone else.
The official announcement and a note found in Mr. Kravchenko's pocket, the security chief added, left little doubt that Mr. Kravchenko had committed suicide.
Oleksandr V. Turchinov, chairman of the Security Service of Ukraine, said in televised remarks that the note left by Mr. Kravchenko could provide significant details for prosecutors investigating the killing of Georgy Gongadze, a prominent journalist whose death in 2000 provoked protests and international criticism of Leonid D. Kuchma, who was then the president.
Mr. Kravchenko, who served as interior minister at the time of Mr. Gongadze's abduction and killing, was found dead Friday at a country cottage outside Kiev.
He had been scheduled to meet prosecutors on Friday for questioning about his involvement in Mr. Gongadze's case or his knowledge of the details surrounding it.
Mr. Turchinov was recently appointed by the new president, Viktor A. Yushchenko, who has vowed to revive the long-stalled investigation into Mr. Gongadze's death. Mr. Turchinov said in an interview on Ukraine's 1+1 television network that Mr. Kravchenko had been "one of the prime suspects."
His death has roiled Ukraine's politics, with some leading lawmakers criticizing the government's handling of the investigation and others calling for more arrests, including Mr. Kuchma's. Mr. Kuchma, who had been vacationing in the Czech Republic after stepping down in January, returned to Ukraine on Saturday after again denying that he had had anything to do with Mr. Gongadze's killing.
Mr. Turchinov, who examined the cottage and the shed where Mr. Kravchenko died, declined to describe the contents of the note, but indicated that Mr. Kravchenko's death had not brought the investigation to a halt.
"It provides quite a lot of information for the investigation," he said of the note, according to Interfax. "The note concerns particular people who are also suspects in the case. It provides investigators with a chance to plan the further direction of the investigation."
After years of inaction under Mr. Kuchma, the investigation has gathered momentum, raising speculation that senior members of Mr. Kuchma's government could face arrest and trial for Mr. Gongadze's killing, one of the most prominent and symbolic crimes committed in Ukraine since the country regained independence after the collapse of the Soviet Union.
Earlier this week, Mr. Yushchenko and the prosecutor general, Svyatoslav M. Piskun, announced that they had arrested three suspects, a general and two colonels who worked under Mr. Kravchenko. They also said they knew who had orchestrated the crime, though they did not elaborate. Mr. Piskun also publicly identified Mr. Kravchenko as a witness, announcing in advance that Mr. Kravchenko would be questioned by investigators on the day he died.
Mr. Turchinov said Mr. Kravchenko's daughter was walking the family's dog in the yard of the house in Koncha-Zaspa, an elite enclave that includes the country cottages of many of the country's political leaders, when Mr. Kravchenko went into a shed and fired two shots with a pistol registered to him. The first shot went through his chin and out his mouth, Mr. Turchinov said. The second bullet entered his right temple.
Man, this guy had one hell of a determination. Most people who shoot themselves in the face and screw it up are usually in to much pain and shock to pull the trigger again. Then again, if you're trying to make it look like suicide and the victim squirms and the bullet misses the brain case from under the chin and goes out the mouth, the temple is the next logical "attempt".
Kuchma's cronies are getting suicided left and right. They were counting on Yanukovych's victory so they could keep the evidence of their crimes buried. Too bad for them.
Yeah, and funny how the Yushchenko camp jumps on the suicide verdict on the day it happens. Hmmm, maybe he had a few to many secrets your orange socialist and EU weenies didn't want drawn up to the light of day???
"suicide by double-tap to the melon"
this merits a Just Damn, yes?
Sounds like the work of the Arkansas mafia.
This sounds like the New York National Guard major who "committed suicide" while at Fort Knox a few years ago. He somehow managed to stab himself 37 times in the chest, including 11 or 13 to the heart.
My thoughts exactly!!!
1 shot will usually definitely get you out of the notion of #2.
I wonder if he dropped the dime on himself, too?
Everyone would have easily believed the suicide verdict had Hillary's chief of staff not been seen running out of the office with a bunch papers hapharzardly stuffed inside a briefcase.
It is not impossible to shoot oneself in the head twice. A book I read by a forensic anthopologist discussed a case in which a lawyer shot himself five times in the head inside his locked office. He was still (barely) alive when the police broke in.
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