Indian mission raises Jaahnavi Kandula case with Seattle officials; family shocked, disappointed over decision of authorities : The Tribune India

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Indian mission raises Jaahnavi Kandula case with Seattle officials; family shocked, disappointed over decision of authorities

Kandula, 23, from Andhra Pradesh, was struck by a police vehicle driven by Officer Kevin Dave when she was crossing a street in Seattle on January 23 last year

Indian mission raises Jaahnavi Kandula case with Seattle officials; family shocked, disappointed over decision of authorities

Indian student Jaahnavi Kandula. File photo



PTI

Washington, February 24

India’s consulate in Seattle has raised with authorities the case of Indian student Jaahnavi Kandula after the prosecution attorney said an overspeeding Seattle police officer who struck and killed her while responding to a drug overdose call will not face any criminal charges citing lack of ‘sufficient’ evidence.

Kandula, 23, from Andhra Pradesh, was struck by a police vehicle driven by Officer Kevin Dave when she was crossing a street in Seattle on January 23 last year. He was driving 74 mph (more than 119 km/h).

Kandula was thrown 100 feet when she was struck by the speeding police patrol vehicle.

In bodycam footage released by the Seattle Police Department, Officer Daniel Auderer laughed about the deadly crash and dismissed any implication Dave might be at fault or that a criminal investigation was necessary.

On Wednesday, the King County Prosecutor’s Office said they would not move forward with criminal charges against Dave due to a lack of evidence to prove a criminal case beyond a reasonable doubt.

India’s consulate in Seattle also said it was monitoring the progress in the case and will extend all possible support in ensuring justice for Kandula and her family.

‘On the recently released investigation report of the King County Prosecution Attorney on the unfortunate death of Jaahnavi Kandula, the 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,’ the mission said in a post 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 the Seattle City Attorney’s office for review,’ the post said on Friday.

It also said the mission was waiting for the completion of Seattle Police’s administrative investigation and would continue monitoring the progress in the case.

Kandula’s family in a statement following the announcement said, “We are shocked and disappointed that the King County Prosecutor’s office has failed to criminally charge the Seattle police officer whose reckless behaviour killed Kandula.”       

“We are pursuing our legal rights to obtain justice for Kandula even though Seattle has failed to do so,” the statement added.

Fox 13 Seattle reported that nearly 100 people gathered outside the Seattle Police West Precinct on Friday to protest the decision by the King County Prosecutor’s Office.

Protesters said there had been a lack of accountability for the officer. The demonstrators accused officers of caring more about themselves than the public, and treating Kandula as if her life didn’t matter.

“They are not public safety, they are a public hazard,” shouted one of the protesters. 

“I struggle to understand how these people can go about their day, knowing they refused to let this go to court. It’s baffling,” said another protester Raymond Mitchell.

#Andhra Pradesh #drug menace #United States of America USA #Washington


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