‘No traces of violence’ on body of man who died in Brussels police custody
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‘No traces of violence’ on body of man who died in Brussels police custody

Credit: Belga

The autopsy of the body of the man (29), who died in a Brussels police cell on Tuesday, did not reveal any traces of violence, according to the Brussels public prosecutor’s office.

On Wednesday morning, a medical examiner carried out an autopsy, which revealed that there were no traces of intervention by third parties and no visible signs of violence. Several toxicological analyses are still ongoing, according to spokesperson Stéphanie Lagasse.

The public prosecutor opened an investigation following the death of the man, who was administratively arrested on Monday for staying on the Belgian territory illegally.

On Tuesday, he was found dead in his cell, in a police station within the Brussels City-Ixelles zone. A magistrate, a medical examiner and a representative of policy oversight body Committee P were dispatched to the scene.

The investigation has also taken custody of the CCTV images of the man’s introduction to the police station and of the cellblock where he was held.

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The investigation into the case of another man who died after arrest by the Brussels police – of the Brussels North police zone – is still ongoing.

On 9 January, Ibrahima Barrie (23) fled from the police after being approached while filming another incident by the Brussels North station.

He was arrested shortly after, and brought to the police station nearby, where he lost consciousness. He was brought to the hospital, where he died. According to the autopsy results, he died of heart failure.

A silent wake for the young man the following Wednesday descended into fighting between youths and police in Saint-Josse and Schaerbeek. A police station, a bus stop and an advertising sign were set on fire and paving cobbles were thrown. Police used rubber bullets at close range in clashes with the rioters.

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times