Korkoneas continues to proclaim his innocence. The trial was held in the remote town of Amfissa in order to mitigate against the possibility of any disturbance.
Greece: Police Officer Convicted in Killing That Led to Riots
October 11, 2010
A police officer was convicted of murder on Monday and sentenced to life in prison for the shooting of a teenager in central Athens that sparked nationwide riots in December 2008. The officer, Epaminondas Korkoneas, was found guilty of intentionally shooting Alexandros Grigoropoulos in the Exarchia district, an area of bars and cafes popular with self-styled anarchists. Another officer [Vassilios Saraliotis] was convicted of complicity and sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Both are expected to appeal. Mr. Korkoneas had insisted that the youth was killed inadvertently by a ricocheting bullet he fired as a warning shot following an altercation with some youths during a night patrol. The killing led to the worst civil unrest Greece had seen in decades. Youths rampaged through cities nightly for two weeks, burning cars and buildings, smashing windows, looting stores and clashing with riot police officers. It also led to a resurgence of anarchist attacks, mostly focusing on police and government targets.
See also : Anarchy in the font of democracy? (December 8, 2009) | Failure to communicate : Epaminondas Korkoneas in court (December 12, 2008).