Photographer Yevgen Nikiforov is under arrest for alleged hit-and-run. Prior to it, he was attacked
A Ukrainian photographer Yevgen Nikiforov, the author of Decommunized: Ukrainian Soviet Mosaics, is under arrest for an alleged traffic code violation that caused a bodily injury, leading to death. The police claim that a man from the village of Vasilyevka, the Odesa region, died due to the accident. On March 14, when the accident occurred, Nikiforov and his brother took photos for a project about experimental villages.
The media Zaborona has contacted the photographer’s brother Vadim Nikiforov, who was with Yevgen during the accident. According to Vadim’s account, two local men approached them in a state of intoxication an hour before the accident. They threatened the photographer. One of them even hit Yevgen.
“The man leaned closely to the car door, so the brother was not able to sit in it. The man started to ask: ‘what are you doing here,’ ‘do you have the permission from the owners of the store to take photos,’ and ‘show us what you had filmed.’ Zhenya said he was a photographer. The man googled him and said, ‘This is the last trip in your life. You will not leave.’ […] My brother felt unwell, and he turned his back on them. The man on crutches approached Yevgen and struck his elbow under Yegven’s rib. ‘Well, has it become easier now?’ The man asked and laughed,” says Vadim Nikiforov.
According to Vadim, at one point, one of the men opened the car door and stuck his head in the car cabin. Yevgen sat in the car, backpedalled, and the man began to run, following the vehicle’s movement. At first, he ran on the asphalt and then quit hold of the car door. On the day of the accident, the telegram channel “Х*евая Одесса [Sh*tty Odessa]” published a recording from the local video surveillance camera, which shows two men trying to get into the car.
Yevgen Nikiforov is charged with Part 2 of Article 286 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, which implies the term of imprisonment from 3 years. While commenting on the accident to Zaborona, Yevgen’s lawyer Denis Ponomarenko stated that the investigator mentioned neither the previous conflict in the text of suspicion nor that the man had committed a robbery and threatened Yevgen with physical violence. Besides, there is no evidence concerning the man’s death, and the examination revealing its causes was not conducted.
Now the Kyiv district court of Odesa decides on Yevgen Nikiforov’s measure of restraint.