When the perpetrator is the state, the cameras are deactivated!

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  • 11:56 17 August 2022
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VAN - When the perpetrator of the crime is law enforcement, the cameras working 24 hours across the country either do not record or are broken. While the perpetrators of the crime are acquitted in this way, the lawsuits brought result in impunity.
Evidence in murders committed by state officials is quickly tarnished. The cameras that take 360-degree continuous images 24 hours a day in the areas where the murders were committed are either broken or there are no records of that moment. As a result of the method applied in the files of all perpetrators, almost all of the cases result in impunity. The last reason for the crime scene cameras to be "broken" or "not filmed" presented in the event that 12-year-old H.E., who was seriously injured as a result of the explosion of a military object in the Kiratî District of Van's Başkale district. It was claimed that the camera, which recorded the area 360 degrees at the moment of the explosion, which injured the child, did not capture it. Thus, the most important evidence of the incident was removed and the policy of impunity was made.
Similar to H.E.'s injury, some of the reasons for "the camera is broken, it didn't shoot" in the deaths and injuries that were perpetrated by state officials in the past are as follows:
Mehmet Deniz, who was injured as a result of the police intervention in the march held on March 8, 2008 in Erciş district of Van, lost his life in the police station he was taken to. While the judicial process regarding Mehmet Deniz did not reach a conclusion for 13 years, the police sent a letter to the prosecutor's office, claiming that all the cameras in the vicinity were broken and the culprit could not be found. The case resulted in impunity.
After the rocket launch attack on the Gevaş District Police Department in Van, on June 9, 2017, 4 villagers who returned from collecting mushrooms were detained and tortured for hours in the police station. O.Ş. is the policeman was acquitted. The court cited the low ambient lighting in the camera recordings as the reason for the decision, and therefore the faces could not be fully selected. Photos showing that four people who were taken into custody while returning from collecting mushrooms were severely tortured. The photos were spread on social media and this incident remained on the agenda for years.
17-year-old Lütfullah Tacik in Van was detained on May 16, 2014 while entering Turkey from Iğdır. Tajik, who was taken to the Foreigners Branch of the Iğdır Police Department and then sent to the Van Removal Center, was detained on May 27, 2014 by the police officer S.O. beaten to death by While the police did not accept the accusations, the images of torture against Tajik did not emerge because the cameras at the scene were "broken". The company responsible for the cameras of the GGM said that only one camera did not record, while the gendarmerie report claimed that no cameras were recorded on the day of the incident. As a result of the trial, police officer S.O. was sentenced to only 5 months.
During the protests in Van's Hacıbekir Neighborhood, the armored vehicle 12-year-old A.O. seriously injured the boy. No camera footage could be found in the proceedings after the incident. Again on July 24, 2016, 4-year-old Taha Kılıç, who was trapped under a moving police panzer in front of Van's İpekyolu District Police Department, lost his life. No action was taken against the police officers who caused Taha's death, as there were no camera records or images showing the incident in the area.
Efe Tektekin, 5, who was trying to cross the street on September 11, 2019, on Emek Street in the Bağlar district of Diyarbakır, was hit by an armored vehicle, causing his death. Police İ.A., who used the armored vehicle at the hearings after the criminal complaint, claimed that the camera system of the armored vehicle he had been using since 2017 was not working.
Again, 16 of the 30 cameras collected in the murder of Ali İsmail Korkmaz, whom the police beat to death during the Gezi protests, were broken. Later, it was claimed that he was missing again in a 20-minute episode on the Beşik Hotel's camera and a 76-second episode showing Korkmaz leaving the street after being attacked. Hotel owner Erdoğan Gözseçen attributed the "lost" sections to the "switch off" at that time. However, the presence of footage of two plainclothes policemen entering the hotel in the same footage aroused the suspicion that the cameras might have been turned off by these two policemen.
Mert Mehmet Tilev was shot in the middle of the street by the police on October 6, 2014 in Istanbul. It was argued that in the images in the report of the Forensic Medicine Institute, which reached the Prosecutor's Office, it was not clear who had fired. On the CD containing the images after the report from the Forensic Medicine, it was revealed that the images showing the moment of the shooting and which were clear before going to the institution were broken. A person working on the street where Tilev was shot stated that the next day, the police visited the workplaces with cameras, they stopped by his own workplace, but they went because the camera could not see the street.
Nigerian Festus Okey died on August 20, 2007, in Istanbul Beyoğlu Police Station, with a bullet from the gun of police officer Cengiz Yıldız. The prosecutor's office asked the police for the camera recordings, but received the answer that "the cameras were not recording at that moment".
In the autopsy of 52-year-old Resul İlçin, who died in the police station in Şırnak's İdil District, it was revealed that he had beat marks on his head and various parts of his body. The Şırnak Governor's Office claimed that İlçin had fallen to the ground on his own and died. The governor's office had made a statement saying, "The security cameras were not recording when Rasul fell from the chair, if it had been recorded, we would have shown it already."
In addition to these, the cameras did not record that Mustafa Duman (17), who died as a result of the fire opened by an armored vehicle while sitting in front of his house in Van on August 30, 2016, and Sami Uçan, who died in 2017 as a result of being hit by an armored police vehicle in Van, on May 4, 2017, in Şırnak and also the death of 7-year-old Muhammet and his 6-year-old brother Furkan Yıldırım, who were sleeping in the room after the scorpion-type armored vehicle broke into the house in Karşıyaka District of Silopi district of Istanbul.

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