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India Demands Probe Into Jaahnavi Kandula’s Case After US Cop’s Video ‘Mocking’ Her Death Goes Viral
Auderer in the video could be heard saying, "it’s a regular person,". He then went on to say "just write a check - $11,000, she was 26 anyway, she had limited value."
Seattle:?India has demanded a thorough investigation into the death of an Indian student, Jaahnavi Kandula, who was hit and killed by a police car as she was crossing a street in Seattle, United States in January this year. Taking to X, The Consulate General of India in San Francisco termed the incident as “deeply troubling” where a cop was heard joking with colleagues and mocking the death of the 23-year-old graduate student. “We have taken up the matter strongly with local authorities in Seattle & Washington State as well as senior officials in Washington DC for a thorough investigation & action against those involved in this tragic case,” the mission said in a post on platform X (formerly Twitter).”
Earlier, police watchdog agency had opened an investigation against an officer at the Seattle Police Department, Daniel Auderer, also the vice president of the Seattle Police Officers Guild for joking about her death. In the video, Officer Daniel Auderer discusses the investigation into the accident involving Jaahnavi Kandula, a student at Northeastern University’s Seattle campus, who was fatally struck in a crosswalk by his colleague, Officer Kevin Dave, on January 23.
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Recent reports including in media of the handling of Ms Jaahnavi Kandula’s death in a road accident in Seattle in January are deeply troubling. We have taken up the matter strongly with local authorities in Seattle & Washington State as well as senior officials in Washington DC
— India in SF (@CGISFO) September 13, 2023
A footage from the bodycam released by the Seattle Police Department showed Auderer speaking on a call with Seattle Police Officers’ Guild President Mike Solan. The two were heard making jokes about Jaahnavi after she was hit by a car that was marked as a ‘patrol vehicle’ on Jan. 23. Auderer in the video could be heard saying, “she’s dead,” Auderer then laughs and says “it’s a regular person,”. He then went on to say “just write a check – $11,000, she was 26 anyway, she had limited value.”
Check the footage here:
The?graduate student from the Seattle campus of Northeastern University died on the spot after the accident. She was due to receive her master’s degree in information systems in December, according to?The Seattle Times.
While Solan’s response was not recorded on the camera, it is learnt that?Auderer, in a written statement to the city’s Office took accountability for his actions.
A conservative talk radio host on KTTH-AM, Jason Rantz, reported that he had obtained a written statement Auderer provided to the city’s Office of Police Accountability. In it, Auderer said that Solan had lamented the death and that his own comments were intended to mimic how the city’s attorneys might try to minimize liability for it.
“I intended the comment as a mockery of lawyers,” Auderer wrote, according to KTTH.?“I laughed at the ridiculousness of how these incidents are litigated and the ridiculousness of how I watched these incidents play out as two parties bargain over a tragedy.”
Who Was Jaahnavi Kandula?
Jaahnavi was from Andhra Pradesh’s Kurnool district.
She was due to graduate this December from the Northeastern University campus in South Lake Union.
She went to the US from Bengaluru on a student exchange program in 2021 to pursue master’s degree, she was on her final year of Master of Science in Information Systems at the Engineering college.
US assures quick investigation
The Biden administration has assured the Indian government of a quick investigation into the death of Indian student Jaahnavi Kandula in Seattle after being struck by a speeding police patrol car and bringing to justice the police officers who were responsible for it.
The US government swung into action after India’s Ambassador to the US, Taranjit Singh Sandhu, strongly raised the issue at the highest level in Washington and sought prompt action on the killing of Kandula, and the highly insensitive behaviour of the police officer in Seattle in Washington state.