MOSCOW, December 20 (RIA Novosti) – A man who died from five stab wounds to the chest after a road rage incident in St. Petersburg “committed suicide,” the city branch of the Investigative Committee said.
However, an inquiry was ongoing because the suicide scenario is based solely on testimony of the victim’s opponents, media reported on Thursday.
The Toyota Land Cruiser Prado owned by the unemployed Grigory Kochnev collided with a Hyundai sedan on the highway encircling St. Petersburg on Wednesday afternoon, Komsomolskaya Pravda reported.
Another incident followed, as a Lada carrying two Dagestanis crashed into an Audi trying to avoid a collision with Kochnev, the report said.
The newspaper reported that Kochnev got out of his car in a fit of road rage and after a brief scuffle with the Dagestanis, ran back to his car, where, according to the eyewitnesses, he stabbed himself to death with a knife.
This report was echoed by the investigators late on Wednesday.
But four of the five wounds hit his heart, which is “implausible” in case of a suicide, a forensic expert who examined Kochnev’s body told city news website Fontanka.ru on condition of anonymity.
Kochnev’s relatives claimed he was killed and suggested that the car crash could have been staged by criminals looking to rob him, which often happens in Russia, Fontanka.ru said. The Investigative Committee had not commented on this version of the incident as of Thursday evening.