Story By: Ana Marjanovic, Sub-Editor: Michael Leidig, Agency: Newsflash
Cops arrested a former soldier for murder hours after fishermen pulled the body of his seven-year-old son from a river.
The boy’s remains were found in a duffel bag weighed down by stones at the bottom of the Temernik river in southern Russia on Monday, 30th May.
Rostov-on-Don resident Alexander Vedmetsky admitted to disposing of the boy’s body in the river but denied killing him, claiming the youngster fell asleep and failed to wake up.
The prosecution stated that the suspect admitted he “systematically caused bodily harm and later drowned the body of the already deceased boy in the river”.
The suspect, a 32-year-old former military serviceman, is unemployed and twice divorced, according to the court.
He had also plied his trade as a rescue worker for the civil defence in nearby Taganrog but was apparently sacked from that job, said his second wife Yulia.
The victim’s mother – Vedmetsky’s first wife – had reportedly taken the boy to Luhansk in Ukraine after her divorce from the suspect in 2017.
But she then abandoned the youngster and left him for his grandmother to raise.
The suspect fetched his son from Ukraine around a year and a half ago and had been raising him since then, according to local reports.
The dad had already been visited by a cop for allegedly beating the boy after neighbours called the police when they heard screams coming from the youngster.
The officer in question is now under investigation for negligence after failing to report the incident to the child services.
Neighbours also reported often seeing the suspect in a state of intoxication.
The man did not deny that he beat his son regularly, including the day before the alleged crime with a cord, ostensibly for stealing from a supermarket.
Yulia added that Vedmetsky was not the boy’s biological father, despite the youngster having taken his surname. Investigators have since ordered a DNA test.
In court, the suspect protested his innocence and begged the judge not to send him to prison.
He said: “I did not commit murder, I am not going to change my place of residence. I am against it, please leave me under house arrest.”
However, the judge was not swayed by his plea and ordered his placement in a pre-trial detention centre until at least 29th July.
Vedmetsky is the sole suspect in the investigation.