The Greek Police on Monday responded to accusations of using undue force by taking a teenager who was injured in a botched escape to hospital in handcuffs, saying it was for his own safety.
Sources in the police told Kathimerini on Monday that the 16-year-old was arrested by riot police officers during clashes with self-styled anarchists in the downtown district of Exarchia in the early hours of Sunday.
The teen was being taken by patrol car to central police headquarters (GADA) on Alexandras Avenue, when he pushed the officer escorting him, jumped out of the vehicle and ran out onto the busy thoroughfare, still in handcuffs. In his haste to avoid capture, he reportedly ran out in front of a car that had just set off from a green light.
According to the sources, when officers and paramedics approached him, the teenager was suffering from shock and was in a highly excitable state, prompting the decision to leave on the handcuffs for his own, as well as the ambulance staff’s safety.
Doctors who admitted him to intensive care on Sunday afternoon after he suffered what appeared to be an epileptic fit said on Monday that he is out of danger but is still being monitored closely. According to initial reports, he sustained contusions to his face and some bruising on his lungs in the crash.
The 16-year-old is looking at charges for his alleged involvement in the clashes, in which riot officers were pelted with stones and Molotov cocktails, as well as over his escape attempt. The driver of the car that ran into him is also facing charges, while an investigation is under way into the actions of the arresting officers.