NEWS

Second suspect in Zak Kostopoulos death released

TAGS: Crime

A 55-year-old man seen in an amateur video of the events leading up to the death of an LGBTQ rights activist suspected of trying to rob a jewelry store was released pending trial on Friday.

The 55-year-old is one of two men seen in the video kicking Zak Kostopoulos repeatedly in the head as the 33-year-old crawled through a broken window on the front of a jewelry store near Athens's Omonia Square.

The store's owner is the second man. He was also released from custody this week pending trial.

The two suspects face assault and manslaughter charges, though a coroner's report earlier this week said there was no evidence to suggest that Kostopoulos died as a direct result of the beating he endured.

Speaking at Friday's hearing, the 55-year-old reportedly expressed remorse for the incident and said that he reacted out of fear, as the 33-year-old was holding a knife.

The jewelry store's 73-year-old owner had also said that he acted in self-defense.

Initial reports claimed Kostopoulos was trying to rob the store, but others said he was trying to avoid a brawl that had started nearby.

In the meantime, a probe was ordered on Thursday into the behavior of policemen during Kostopoulos's detention after the release of a video that shows one policeman kicking the victim.

Kostopoulos died in an ambulance on the way to hospital after he was detained.

Online