Trolley bus death probe stalls as coroner contradicts expert findings

A probe into the circumstances surrounding the death of a 19-year-old student who fell from a trolley bus on Tuesday after he was caught without a ticket became more complicated over the weekend as a coroner’s report appeared to contradict the findings of a committee of experts who examined the vehicle, suggesting that the youth had not been pushed from the bus.

A coroner who examined the body of Thanassis Kanaoutis reportedly found “grazes on the upper arms and red patches on the neck” which, he deemed, had been caused when the ticket inspector on duty at the time tried to restrain the 19-year-old.

Several passengers who had been on the No 12 trolley bus on Tuesday night claimed Kanaoutis and the ticket inspector had argued and scuffled.

A report by a committee of transport experts, who examined the doors through which Kanaoutis fell, concluded that the 19-year-old caught his leg in the closing doors as he had been jumping out of the trolley bus, causing the fall that proved to be fatal.

Police late on Friday briefly detained nine youths alleged to have been involved in the violent but small-scale protests that followed Kanaoutis’s funeral in Peristeri, western Athens, close to the trolley bus accident.

Transport authorities have launched an internal investigation to determine whether the driver of the No 12 trolley bus and the ticket inspector who allegedly argued with the 19-year-old prior to the fall should be held accountable for the young man’s death.