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Police: explosion is result of domestic dispute

  • 2004-11-25
  • By The Baltic Times
TALLINN - The explosion that took lives of the bomber and one police officer in Tallinn on Nov.25 was probably triggered by a love triangle incident, according to police.

The lives of the three police officers who were wounded in the explosion were no longer in danger after emergency medical treatment, police said on Friday.

A police patrol came to Tallinn's Oismae residential district on Nov.25 early in the morning following a phone call from a woman who said that her life was in danger because of a man who was trying to get into her apartment through the window.

The police arrived to witness an emotionally excited middle-aged man who had by that time already managed to clime inside the apartment, wearing a belt of explosives around his body under the jacket. Police officers persuaded the man to leave the apartment and called for backup, including a negotiator and the bomb squad, but the man got away from the patrol as they left the apartment building.

As the police forces were arriving to the area, the man, later identified by the police as 50-year-old Yevgeni, who has a criminal record, supposedly was prevented from escaping.

He rapidly approached and entered one of the police vehicles, where constable Julia Gorbacheva was sitting with her dog. Yevgeni grabbed Julia by her neck in an attempt to take her hostage, police said.

Three police officers who were nearby surrounded the van, one of them pointed the gun at Yevgeni and the explosion followed in several seconds.

The police said that it was unclear whether Yevgeni triggered the bomb intentionally or by accident.

Police ruled out terror as a motive to the incident.

Police said the amount of explosive substance Yevgeni had was equal to about one kilogram of TNT which is considered a significant portion. It is unclear where did the bomber, who worked as plumber, got the explosive material.

Thirty-year-old Gorbacheva joined the police dog crew as an instructor in April 2004. She was the first female police officer in Estonia who died while carrying out her duties.

Since 1992, 19 police officers have been killed on duty.