On 29 December 2021, the home of the Yolgın family in the Çilek neighbourhood of Akdeniz in Mersin was raided by police from the narcotics branch of Mersin Police Department. However, it later transpired that the police had raided the wrong house. Two young men, İsmail and Serhat Yolgın, argued with the police after they had searched the house and found nothing, at which point the police beat the men up for criticising them, MA reports.
Cousins İsmail and Serhat Yolgın were detained and taken to the police station. They later obtained a report confirming they had been assaulted due to the maltreatment they were subjected to at the police station, but they were also charged with “resisting the duty officer.”
İsmail Yolgın relates what happened on that day:
“They searched the house, and we didn’t make any trouble during the search. Then I heard my cousin Serhat’s voice. They were beating him up, I asked what was going on, so they let him go and attacked me. They took us to Mersin Police Station. They took us to the narcotics department on the 4th floor. They took us to a room with no camera.”
The maltreatment continued at the station too.
“The police chief Ümit Akdeniz entered and immediately took his jacket off. He came at me, saying, ‘You were acting manly there, let’s see you acting manly here.’ At that point they hit me, I’ve got 2-3 stitches now. After the blow I fell down. The police chief Ümit Akdeniz kicked me in the face with his boot a few times, then I passed out. I came to to the sound of my couisin Serhat screaming, they were beating him up. It was Ümit Akdeniz, the police chief who beat us up the most.”
Ismail Yolgın states that when they passed out the police poured water over them, and when they came to, the beatings continued.
“We were passing out, they were pouring water over us so we came to again then they beat us again. This continued for four or five hours”
He says that they were not even allowed to receive proper treatment at the hospital.
“They they took us to the hospital. The nurses said that we needed stay under their control at the hospital, but they did not let us stay in hospital”
Serhat Yolgın’s statements are similar to those of his cousin.
“They dragged me along the floor to me to where my cousin was, he had passed out. Ümit Akdeniz was the only one whose name I knew. He started beating me. They poured water over us, they beat us, we passed out, they poured water, we came to, then they continued beating us.”
İsmail Yolgın says they will take the torture to the courts.
“We filed a criminal complaint about the police officers who tortured us.”