VILNIUS - Three suspects have been arrested for the murder of Lietuvos Rytas photographer Viktoras Kapocius, who was killed during a robbery attack in his home on Dec. 6.
A 64-year-old photographer was murdered in his apartment in the Uzupis region of Vilnius around 2 a.m. after a gang of robbers stormed into the premises and began beating him. When he fought back, the suspects then knocked him to the floor and kicked him, according to his girlfriend, who witnessed the attack. Kapocius died at the scene.
Before leaving the suspects stole a plasma television set, mobile phones, cash and other items worth up to 10,000 litas (2,900 euros).
The three suspects arrested for the crime are 19-year-old Adomas Maciulevicius, 33-year-old Rolandas Sinkevicius and an unidentified 16-year-old, according to a release issued by Aleksandras Juozapaitis, a spokesman for the Vilnius regional prosecutor's office. Police have a total of seven suspects listed in the case.
At least one of the men arrested, Sinkevicius, has been convicted of multiple crimes in the past, and the prosecutors are currently investigating more links to the seven suspects, according to the release.
Co-workers, friends, relatives and members of the public bid farewell to Kapocius during a Dec. 8 open-air photography exhibition and ceremony organized by the Press Photography Club of Lithuania.
In a statement the club's president Jonas Staselis said the murder was more than a robbery because it has affected the whole community, not unlike the high number of road deaths in the country.
At the memorial exhibition on V. Kudirkas Square, Kapocius' photographs are presented in a makeshift display, surrounded with candles and flowers.
President Valdas Adamkus attended the ceremony, placing flowers to pay his respects to the photographer he knew for more than 30 years.
Adamkus was quoted by lrytas.com as saying he knew Kapocius to be a good and hardworking man.
Lietuvos Rytas chief photographer Renatas Neverbickas worked with Kapocius for two years at the paper but said he had known him personally for more than 20 years. Kapocius worked as a photographer for the daily's metro section.
"Half the town knew him, [from] the drunkards and homeless to the very high-profile people. He did his work efficiently and was the first to chase after crime stories and snap photographs," Neverbickas said.
Neverbickas said the work of a photographer is dangerous, especially when the assignments are at the courthouse.
"We hear threats from suspected criminals in court when we take photos all the time," Neverbickas said.
Kapocius' remains will be on display at a funeral home in Uzupis until Dec. 15.