PODGORICA, 10.03.2022 – Milos Jevtic from Niksic was sentenced to three months of house custody, because on March 14, 2021, he endangered Vijesti journalist Jelena Jovanovic and police officer Milinko Dragic with his reckless behavior.
After almost a year and published video recording of an attack, the Basic Court in Niksic passed a first instance verdict against the 40-year-old.
After closing the polls in the local elections in the town near Trebjesa, Jevtic first mistreated an officer of the Police Administration, and in the continuation of his “performance”, he removed a part from a parked vehicle and hit Jovanovic in the head with it.
“By committing violence against others, insolent and ruthless behavior, he endangered the victims Jovanovic Jelena and Dragic Milinko and disturbed public order and peace, in the way that, after several insults and threats against the police officer – the victim Dragic Milinko, tore the protective mask from his face, then took an unknown object from the passenger motor vehicle and shot in his direction and hit him in the head area – left ear, causing him minor bodily injury… after which he took another unknown object from the same vehicle and shot in the direction of the injured party… by which he hit the injured party Jelena Jovanovic, who on that occasion suffered a minor bodily injury”, it is stated in the verdict of Judge Vukota Vujacic.
The explanation states the defense of the defendant, in which he stated, among other things, that he had been consuming alcohol since that morning, and that due to his alcoholic state, he could not remember the event until he saw everything on television.
“In his closing argument, the defendant, personally and through his defense counsel, while adhering to the confession, pointed out that he was guilty and responsible for the crime charged against him by the prosecution, expressed real remorse… and suggested to the court that he milder punishments “, it is stated in the first instance verdict.
Jovanovic’s legal representative, lawyer Mladen Tomovic, stated that the first-instance verdict, in a sense, is a certain type of satisfaction for the injured who suffered a minor bodily injury while performing their work tasks.
“What is much more important is the fact that this verdict shows the conditions and circumstances in which journalists perform their work tasks, and that they are often exposed to the risk of violating their own, both mental and physical integrity. Such cases must be a strong alarm for state authorities to fully implement their legal competencies in order to ensure the safety of journalists and their safe and uninterrupted work, without which we cannot talk about media freedom in full”, said Tomovic.
He assessed that the compensation of non-pecuniary damage in civil proceedings, in relation to the valid court practice, cannot be adequate compensation for everything that the injured parties go through.
“And my opinion is that the courts in these cases should have a greater degree of sensitivity and follow the practice of the European Court of Human Rights, as well as comparable international practice related to journalists’ compensation claims. Certainly, such and similar events indisputably leave long-lasting traumas and can have a disincentive effect on the public in the future of the journalistic profession, which is why it is primarily up to the state to create adequate conditions for safe and uninterrupted work – both media and their employees”, said Tomovic.