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Indian Consulate designates family representatives to ensure justice for student murdered in US

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Seattle | February 24, 2024 10:56:04 AM IST
In the Indian student murder case in US, the Indian Consulate General in Seattle said on Friday that they have raised the matter of Indian student murder in US with the local authorities and the case has been referred to Seattle city Attorney's office for review of King County Prosecuting Attorney verdict.

The statement comes after the Seattle police officer who struck and killed Indian student Jaahnavi Kandula while responding to an overdose call, will not face any criminal charges due to lack of "sufficient" evidence.

"On the recently released investigation report of the King County Prosecution Attorney on the unfortunate death of Jaahnavi Kandula, Consulate has been in regular touch with the designated family representatives and will continue to extend all possible support in ensuring justice for Jaahnavi and her family," Indian Consulate in Seattle posted on X.

"We have also raised the matter strongly with local authorities, including Seattle Police for appropriate redress. The case has now been referred to Seattle City Attorney's office for review. We await completion of Seattle Police's administrative investigation and will continue to monitor progress on the case," it added.

23-year-old Jaahnavi Kandula was allegedly hit by a police vehicle operated by Officer Dave in Seattle on January 23.

Officer Dave, responding to a call about a drug overdose, was allegedly driving at an approximate speed of 120 km/h at the moment of the collision.

Further compounding the tragedy, released bodycam footage from the Seattle Police Department captured Officer Daniel Auderer making light of the fatal accident, "Just write a cheque. USD 11,000. She was 26 anyway, she had limited value," Auderer was heard saying in the video, as per reports.

The King County Prosecutor's Office said they will not move forward with criminal charges against Seattle Police Officer Kevin Dave.

"In January of 2024, Aces completed their report. Our Felony Traffic Unit has reviewed the Aces' report, along with all available evidence. Based on all the available evidence presented and Aces' independent analysis of the collision, our legal analysis reveals that the PAO lacks sufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Officer Kevin Dave was impaired by drugs or alcohol, driving in a reckless manner, or driving with disregard for the safety of others," King County Prosecutor's Office said in an official statement.

"As a result, the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office has concluded (based on the law and all available and admissible evidence) that we cannot file criminal charges in this matter," it added.

King County Prosecuting Attorney Leesa Manion said that she believes they lack the evidence to prove a criminal case beyond a reasonable doubt.

"It is the responsibility of the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office to review all available evidence relating to the case involving Seattle Police Officer Kevin Dave and the January 2023 collision death of Jaahnavi Kandula. After staffing this case with senior deputy prosecuting attorneys and office leadership, I have determined that we lack sufficient evidence under Washington State law to prove a criminal case beyond a reasonable doubt," the statement said.

The statement also said that the prosecutor's office also finds the comments made by Seattle Police Officer Daniel Auderer, recorded on his body-worn video, "appalling and deeply troubling." Auderer, who was not involved in the January collision, was captured in the video saying, "But she is dead" and laughing while on the phone. (ANI)

 
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