Policeman charged for Gypsy death

A mob of angry Gypsies smashed up the new offices of the Zefyri police department yesterday in revenge for the fatal shooting on Wednesday night of a young Gypsy man by an officer manning a police roadblock in the area. Motorcycle policeman Georgios Tylianakis was arrested and charged with murder yesterday for the death of Marinos Christopoulos, 21, who drove through one of the several roadblocks mounted in the Zefyri area to crack down on widespread drug trafficking. A police statement issued hours after the incident said Christopoulos, a street market vendor with prior arrests for theft, had driven his pick-up truck at the policemen, knocking over Tylianakis. This was denied by Gypsy bystanders. Tylianakis shot him in the head – he claims that his gun went off by accident – whereupon the car crashed into a lamp post. A group of Gypsies rushed to the scene and kept the officers away while others took Christopoulos to hospital, where he was pronounced dead. According to the coroner’s report, he had been shot in the back of the head.

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