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Stability of our families where respect dominates is of great importance to us, Aghvan Hovsepyan (Photos)

07.12.2016 18:41

A discussion on the results of studies of criminal cases investigated on murders and willful infliction of heavy bodily damage to health committed by family members was held today in the RA Investigative Committee.
 

According to the Investigative Committee’s work program of 2016 confirmed by the order of the RA IC Chairman dated 21.01.2016 criminal cases on murder, as well as willful infliction of heavy damage committed by family members investigated in 2015 in the proceeding of the Investigative Committee were studied in the Investigative Committee. Study like this was conducted for the first time in Armenia.
 

“Stability of our families, peaceful families where respect dominates is of great importance to us”, said the Chairman of the RA Investigative Committee Aghvan Hovsepyan and added, “It is one thing that the crime is committed in the street, another thing that it is committed in the family. The maintenance of principle of respect between family members is important. Conducting preliminary investigation our investigators aim to prevent those actions”, he said adding that the investigators must be able not only to find the facts but also to reveal the cases that happened before.
 

RA Human Rights Defender Arman Tatoyan, the Chairman of the Chamber of Advocates Ara Zohrabyan, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States to Armenia Richard M. Mills, Head of the OSCE Office in Yerevan Argo Avakov, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Christoph Bierwirth, representatives of other international organizations and civil society were invited and took part in the discussion.
 

The results of the studies were presented by Deputy Chairman of the RA Investigative Committee, Doctor of Law Artur Ghambaryan which was followed by discussion. The brief description of the results is attached.
 

Based on the results of discussions the RA IC Chairman Aghvan Hovsepyan awarded senior investigator of particularly important cases of the RA IC Syuniq Regional Investigative Department Narine Hovhannisyan and investigator of particularly important cases of the RA IC Lori Regional Investigative Department Hrachik Poghosyan with a Medal of the fourth degree “For Impeccable Service”  for providing comprehensive, objective and complete investigation of criminal cases on domestic violence, taking the peculiarities of the criminal case, the risk for the affected to become double affected into consideration, as well as choosing a correct methodology into consideration.
 

Information on criminal cases investigated on murders and willful infliction of heavy damage to health committed by the members of the family
 

According to the Investigative Committee’s work program of 2016 confirmed by the order of the RA IC Chairman Aghvan Hovsepyan dated 21.01.2016 criminal cases on murder, as well as willful infliction of heavy damage committed by family members investigated in 2015 in the proceeding of the Investigative Committee were studied in the Investigative Committee. Study like this was conducted for the first time in Armenia.
 

Murder
 

In the result of studies it was found that 23 cases of murder and infliction of heavy bodily damage committed by a family member have been recorded in 2015 16 of which are murders; it is 17 percent of murders recorded in the republic.  

6 of murder cases committed by a family member were recorded in regions (2 in Aragatsotn, 1 in Kotayq, 1 in Shirak, 1 in Lori, 1 in Syuniq), 10 of them were recorded in Yerevan (2 in Qanaqer-Zeytun, 2 in Malatia-Sebastia, 2 in Ajapnyak and Davtashen, 2 in Avan and Nor Norq, 1 in Shengavit, 1 in Erebuni and Nubarashen administrative districts).
 

13 of the criminal cases were sent to court, 6 of them – with the bill of indictment, 7 – with motions on using coercive medical measures.
 

6 of 16 the accused had secondary education, 5 incomplete secondary – 8 years’ education, 3 of them – vocational and 2 – higher educations.
 

None of them had a job. 2 of the accused were pensioners (one of them – second category disabled).
 

12 of 16 accused are male, 4 are female. 6 of them had minor children in their charge. None of them was previously convicted.
 

In the framework of 8 criminal cases the affected were the wives of the accused, in 3 criminal cases children (1 of them – stepchild), in 1 criminal case adult son, in 1 – husband, in 1 - mother, in 1 - grandmother and in 1 - brother.

 

Willful infliction of heavy damage to health

              
In 2015 7 criminal cases were investigated on willful infliction of heavy damage committed by a family member. 6 of these criminal cases were sent to court, 1 was suspended based on the fact that the accused hid from investigation and search was declared against him.
 

5 of the mentioned cases were committed in regions; 2 in Kotayq region, 2 in Armavir, 1 in Gegharquniq, 2 in Yerevan – in Shengavit and Erebuni-Nubarashen administrative districts.
 

In the framework of the studied cases 5 out of 7 accused had secondary education, 1 had incomplete secondary – 8 years’ education, 1 - was a student.
 

None of the 7 accused had a job, 6 of them are males, 1 of them is female, none of them has been previously convicted.
 

The affected in 2 criminal cases were the wives of the accused, in one case the affected was the sister, in 1 case – the brother, in 1 case - minor son, in 1 case – uncle, in 1 case - father.
 

The motive of crimes
 

During preliminary investigation of the mentioned criminal cases necessary investigatory actions were conducted to find the motive of the crime, as well as the contributing circumstances.
 

According to the studies the motives of the above-mentioned grave crimes committed by family members were different – marital infidelity, unfriendly relationship and troubles during divorces caused by them, material benefit, poor social conditions. In 7 cases the mentioned committals were committed in insane, in limited sanity condition or influenced by mental disorder and medical coercive measures were used against the defendants.
 

Problematic issues, suggestions
 

-       As a precautionary measure of domestic violence the control over persons suffering from mental disease and receiving outpatient treatment, the treatment, as well as the possible legal consequences in case the person has avoided necessary medical intervention must be clarified.
 

-       3 out of 7 heavy damages inflicted by a family member were committed by those having used alcoholic drink. The accused in these cases have previously displayed offending and anti-social behavior under the influence of alcohol so in the result of preventive actions it might be possible to avoid those consequences.  According to the Point 6 of the Article 16 of RA Constitution “everyone shall have a right to freedom and personal immunity; a person can be deprived of freedom in cases and procedure defined by law. It is proposed to provide deprivation of freedom by law – in order to prevent the social risk caused by winebibbers” and to fix the cases and procedure to deprive of freedom those having used alcohol.
 

-       In cases of heavy damage caused by a family member, particularly in cases when the affected and the apparent criminal live at the same address, this circumstance can affect not only on the affected and the witnesses and therefore, on comprehensive, complete and objective investigation of the case, but also it can increase the probability of becoming double affected. The above-mentioned circumstance must become one of the issues discussed during determination of the type of pretrial measure. While choosing pretrial measure the realism and the fact that it is not untimely is highlighted paying special attention to the escape of the apparent criminal and/or probability of affecting other persons.
 

-       In at least 7 criminal cases out of 23 studied ones there was a risk of becoming a double affected. Especially, in criminal cases initiated according to the Article 112 of RA Criminal Code in case when the apparent criminal and the affected live together the recurrence risk of arguments, violence or other forms of intolerance is much bigger that’s why the investigative body must take efficient measures to provide the protection if detention has not been chosen as a pretrial measure.  
 

-       In families where grave crimes were recorded there have previously been arguments, particularly between the affected and the accused. The affected applied to law enforcement bodies but later they took back their complaint and based on the absence of complaint decisions on rejecting the initiation of the criminal case, as well as not conducting or stopping criminal prosecution were made. According to the studies, it is not possible to prevent domestic violence by rejecting the initiation of criminal cases on domestic violence or terminating the proceeding of the criminal case which makes it necessary to create and use such efficient preventive measures as accepted in international practice, for example official warning, protective decision and so on. Also, if in such kind of criminal cases there have previously been arguments between the affected and the accused, and the affected have applied to law enforcement bodies, to consider the necessity of application of the Point 10 of the order of the Chairman of the Investigative Committee “On confirming the directory on initiating a criminal case in private charge procedure or unity of dismissing the initiation of the criminal case”.
 

-       In cases of domestic violence it is necessary to show special attitude towards those subjected to domestic violence and/or their relatives and to conduct the investigation with their participation in accordance with standards conditioned by age, gender and psychological features of the representatives of this vulnerable group.
 

-       The studies show that in 23 criminal cases no affected or member of his/her family has received social assistance though in particular cases there has been necessity to do it.
 

-       Taking the peculiarities of this kind of crimes into consideration the Chairman of the RA Investigative Committee Aghvan Hovsepyan instructed to send motions on each case to other competent state bodies in order to take preventive measures, as well as to cooperate with NGOs in order to minimize the risk of becoming a double affected.


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