Off-duty officer killed in robbery
Three armed men shot dead an off-duty police officer who was working a second job as a security guard during the holdup of a bank in Holargos, northeastern Athens, yesterday. Police said the armed men shot the 39-year-old security guard four times, in the stomach and chest, when he attempted to stop them from escaping the branch of Alpha Bank. He died before being being taken to a hospital located just 10 meters away from the bank, a police source said. The three assailants fired a total of 20 bullets during the heist. «They just kept firing their weapons. They didn’t care who they hit,» said an elderly lady who saw the holdup take place. Sources said that a large number of low-ranking off-duty officers are forced to work a second job due to their low salaries, despite this being against the law. The victim, Stefanos Gizas, was employed as a cook at police headquarters, and is believed to have taken the second job to help meet payments for two mortgages he had taken out. Data from police unions show that about half of the 22,000 police officers stationed in the Attica area have some sort of second job, either full- or part-time. Senior police officials held a meeting after the incident yesterday and decided to investigate the security company the victim worked for. Many police officers who work second jobs are not paid social security insurance.