Judge injured in accidental shooting

  • 2002-04-04
  • Staff and wire reports

A Tallinn city court judge was seriously wounded during a quarrel with an acquaintance who accidentally shot her in the neck March 30.

Merle Parts, 34, one of six Tallinn city court judges who handles organized crime cases was shot at about 7 p.m. in a parking lot next to the Aatrium Mall in southern Tallinn.

Police say the shooter, 28-year-old Eero Torger, an unemployed resident of Viimsi district, was detained two hours later.

Parts was released from hospital on April 1.

Torger, who said the gun went off accidentally, fled the scene and got rid of the gun.

Torger faces charges of attempted homicide and possession of an unregistered gun - a 6.35 millimeter handgun - and up to five years in jail.

The Tallinn prosecutor's office issued a 10-day detention warrant for Torger.

According to police, Parts and Torger drove to the shooting location in Parts' car. She was shot while sitting in the car.

"They [Parts and Torger] have been acquaintances on a personal basis for a short period of time," said police spokesperson Kadri Palta.

Kadra declined to comment why Torger pulled the gun out during the conversation.

Parts will miss hearings scheduled for this week, including the cases of Arle Molder, the ex-chief of the National Redemption Fund, a state institution dealing with privatization issues, and Aleksander Einseln, former commander of Estonian Defense Forces.

Molder and Einseln face corruption charges.