Friends, family protest Russian immigrant’s death in police shooting

DENVER — Protesters gathered in Denver Tuesday to voice their anger about the fatal March shooting of 22-year-old Oleg Gidemko.

It was the fourth fatal officer involved shooting in Aurora this year.

Now the family and friends of one of the people killed are filing a lawsuit, saying they don’t want to see it happen again.

They question why officers used lethal force during a “suspicious activity” call, and why a young man about to get married would throw away everything and to threaten police for what they call no reason.

Gidemko, a Russian immigrant, was shot and killed on March 20 as he and two other men tried to elude police in an industrial area where several vehicles had recently been broken into.

“We want to stand up for his rights, too, because there was no right of them to shoot them,” said protester Anna Shishkova.  “They just treat people like dogs.”

“I just don’t want other people to get hurt the same way he got hurt…and his family got hurt,” said Konstantine Leveniks, who describes himself as Gidemko’s best friend.

While police say they respect protesters mourning the loss of a loved one, they have no comment while the DA investigates the shooting.

Oleg’s friends say while he may have made some mistakes that night, they also say he would never have threatened police.

“I know him as a really kind person,” said Leveniks.  “He never in his life hurt a person.”

“It’s to get justice for the family and for him,” said Inna, Oleg’s fiancé.  “And while we want the cops working, we don’t want the same thing happening to another family.”
http://www.kdvr.com/news/kdvr-friends-family-protest-russian-immigrants-death-in-police-shooting-20110517,0,6584923.story

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