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On duty police officer shot dead

PULLING over a drunk driver turned deadly for a 34-year-old police officer who was shot and killed during a traffic stop in the village of Boleráz, near the western-Slovak town of Trnava, on the night of June 14.

PULLING over a drunk driver turned deadly for a 34-year-old police officer who was shot and killed during a traffic stop in the village of Boleráz, near the western-Slovak town of Trnava, on the night of June 14.

The officer and his partner checked a 31-year-old driver with a blood alcohol content of 1.38 per mille. A shooting involving three guns ensued and police found 32 cartridges at the scene. Five projectiles hit the police car, the Sme daily reported.

After the driver fled the scene, he surrendered to a police patrol in the Podunajské Biskupice neighbourhood of Bratislava. He practices shooting firearms for sport and legally possesses three weapons, including submachine gun.

“Witnesses who saw the incident told police that the culprit approached the [police] car in a tactical way,” Trnava police spokeswoman Martina Kredatusová said, as quoted by Sme.

Police have begun the prosecution for the crimes of murder and attempted murder, she added.

The Slovak parliament passed an amendment to the Firearms and Ammunition Act in March 2011 obliging people who keep firearms to undertake an examination by a clinical psychologist. Periodic psychological tests (once every 10 years) became a requirement for anyone wanting to carry firearms, including sports shooters, security staff and policemen who currently have civilian gun permits.

The amendment came in response to the August 2010 shooting spree in Bratislava’s Devínska Nová Ves district, in which local resident Ľubomír Harman killed seven people and injured 15 before fatally shooting himself, according to Sme.

However, screening tests do not scrutinise a person’s mental state deeply enough, and problematic people who do not express indications of their mental disorder are able to pass them, psychologist Karol Kleinmann told Sme.

“Doctors’, psychologists’ even psychiatrists’ examination is insufficient but not because they are doing it wrong,” Kleinmann said. “The result - eligible/ineligible is insufficient.”

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