On Tuesday a Turkish court has ruled that three men detained in relation to the horrific murder of university student Ozgecan Aslan will stand trial on charges of murder and hiding evidence.
The 20-year-old university student’s body was found burnt after she reportedly resisted a rape attempt in the southern city of Mersin earlier this year.
The high criminal court in Tarsus accepted the indictments filed on April 9, against the three suspects, Ahmet Süphi Altindoken, 26, his father Necmettin Altindoken, 50, and Fatih Gökçe, 20.
According to local police Aslan was travelling home as the last passenger on the minibus on Feb 11. The driver of the minibus Ahmet Süphi Altindoken changed his route and attempted to rape her, however, Aslan resisted with the use of pepper spray.
Altindoken then reportedly stabbed Aslan before proceeding to beat her to death with a crowbar. Following the murder, the suspect asked his father Necmettin Altindoken and friend Fatih Gokce to help him dispose of the body by burning it in an attempt to hide the evidence and dumped it in a river.
The victim’s body was found on the Feb 13, and three of the suspects were arrested on the 16th of Feb following an investigation by the police.
Aslan’s murder left Turkey mourning for weeks and reignited a debate about the whether the death penalty should be reinstated. Many protests were held around the country.
Mehmet Aslan, the father of the victim, claimed that death penalty is not a solution and said, “We have no other choice but to love. The ones who are responsible for this incident should not be persecuted. They should be charged in according to the criminal justice, may God help their parents.”
Since then there has been a wide attention given to the case that left Turkey mourning and the public has requested new legislation to be enacted by politicians to prevent any such incidents occurring in the future. There have been no confirmed changes in legislation yet for such cases.