In a major blow to the Goa Police, Sub-Divisional Magistrate Sabaji Shetye inquiring into the death of Cipriano Fernandes, desposed before the Judicial Magistrate First Class at Panjim that it was indeed a custodial death.
The JMFC has taken cognizance of the case after Jowett D’Souza approached it following the refusal of the Agassaim Police Station to register a case of murder against the police officials responsible for Cipriano’s death.
It may be recalled that Cipriano, a sea farer was down in Goa on his holiday when he was picked up by the police on 7th January following a complaint from his girlfriend that he had threatened him. Cipriano was beaten by the police and admitted to the Goa Medical College on 8th January noon. That same evening the Police secured bail for Cipriano when he was lying in a critical condition at the hospital. Cipriano died the next morning and his family has refused to take possession of the body till those responsible for his death are booked.
While the departmental inquiry conducted by Deputy Superintendent of Police Bossuet da Silva has noted that there were procedural lapses on the part of the police officers, the Sub-Divisional Magistrate is conducting a judicial enquiry as mandated by the law.
Deposing before the JMFC, Sabaji Shetye stated that Cipriano died while in police custody due to wounds sustained after his arrest.
Further nailing the police lie that Cipriano died due to epilepsy fits, Dr. Silvano Sapeco who conducted the post mortem in his deposition before the JMFC stated that death occurred due to two injuries on the head which proved to be fatal.
He said that the two injuries were inflicted on the middle and left portion of the head with a blunt object.
The authorities have placed Police Inspector Sandesh Chodankar, Sub-Inspector Radhesh Ramnathkar under suspension following the preliminary report submitted by DySP Bossuet da Silva.