Jēkabpils murder suspect might not be alive, says police chief

There is reason to believe that Leons Rusiņš, wanted for killing a woman in Jēkabpils in front of her child and mother last year, is no longer among the living, State Police Chief Armands Ruks said in an interview with TV3 broadcast "900 seconds" on May 8 morning.

A  year has passed since the tragedy, and the police are still investigating, but the information currently available suggests that Rusiņš is dead. The police chief did not specify the possible causes or circumstances of Rusiņš' death, saying only that there was "reason to believe" that Rusiņš was no longer among the living.

However, the police do not plan to stop the search – "if a person is alive, they will be found sooner or later", the police chief said.

Ruks said that it is also important in this case that systemic weaknesses have been identified during the process and will be improved.

As reported numerous times, a woman born in 1983 was killed in Jēkabpils municipality on April 16 last year in front of her child and mother. The murder was committed by her ex-husband Leons Rusiņš, who had been threatening and harassing the woman for months; it was regularly reported to the police before.

Several police officials have lost their positions or been reprimanded.  In response to the tragic events, the Saeima has significantly increased the maximum sentences for threats of killing, persecution, and failure to comply with the ruling on protection against violence. The maximum prison sentence for these crimes was increased from three months to three years.

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