Accountant of psychoneurological dispensary governed by wife of Nizhnevartovsk Mayor locked up in mental health institution. She could be aware of financial frauds 

Accountant of psychoneurological dispensary governed by wife of Nizhnevartovsk Mayor locked up in mental health institution. She could be aware of financial frauds
Law enforcement authorities possess results of the financial audit of the psychoneurological dispensary Photo: The CrimeRussia

A broken door, people in medical uniform, sirens – this is how a Monday evening has ended for a female resident of Nizhnevartovsk. A medical crew arrived to the former accountant of the municipal psychoneurological dispensary and forcibly took the woman to the mental health institution. The bookkeeper could be aware of financial frauds committed in the dispensary whose Chief Physician is the wife of the Nizhnevartovsk Mayor. The investigators have questions to all participants of the incident. The CrimeRussia was figuring out who could be interested in the emergency hospitalization of the accountant.

Version № 1. Abduction 

On November 26, 2018, the Nizhnevartovsk police have stormed the apartment of Elena Yatsenko, a former accountant of the psychoneurological dispensary (PND) where she had worked for more than 10 years. The policemen broke the front door, entered the apartment, and passed the woman to emergency medics who, in turn, escorted her to the psychoneurological dispensary.

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Broken door lock

“I was placed in a closed ward with serious patients; they put me on a drip. I fell asleep and awoke on November 27 at some 5 a.m. as if it was morning,” – Elena Yatsenko told The CrimeRussia

On the same day, Oleg Grinchenko, Deputy Chief Physician for Treatment, told her that she was seriously ill. The following diagnosis was established: “Mental and behavioral disorders due to the use of alcohol. Active addiction syndrome. Psychopathy-like behavior. Moderate depressive episode”. Yatsenko was told that the dispensary is going to file an application with the court to hospitalize her for 21 day for compulsory treatment.

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Nizhnevartovsk Psychoneurological Dispensary

“In subsequent days, I could not exit my room; they were bringing me food and prohibited from making phone calls and seeing my daughter. Up until November 30, they were telling my daughter that I was heavily intoxicated and they could not bring me to consciousness. However, witnesses saw that I was sober,” – Elena Yatsenko says. 

Daughter Anastasia was unable to see her mother for a week – the medics had prohibited meetings. Then the daughter posted a call for help on social networks. 

According to Anastasia, her mother had worked at the PND as the Chief Accountant up until August. Then she decided to quit due to health issues and a conflict with Chief Physician Olga Zhevelik – wife of Nizhnevartovsk Mayor Vasily Tikhonov.

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Nizhnevartovsk Mayor Vasily Tikhonov

Elena Yatsenko has resigned on August 30 by sending a telegram from Sochi where she was visiting her mother. Her employment record book was sent to her by mail. 

The victim supposes that the PND medics had been waiting for her return to Nizhnevartovsk to hospitalize her.

Elena Yatsenko had access to all financial documents of the medical institution; these records could contain information on committed violations.

“How else can one explain a forcible hospitalization of a healthy person under the pretext of her alcoholism?” – the daughter asks. 

On November 30, Elena Yatsenko managed to send a note to her daughter with a discharged patient. She wrote that she was forcibly kept in the hospital and afraid for her life. Anastasia immediately addressed the police. 

"Officers at the police station haven't even introduced themselves; they were just sneering at me. They had no badges. Only one policeman provided his last name – Til. I spent some four hours at the police station, the officers were unwilling to accept my application. They were unable to say anything meaningful about the broken door. They said that my mother had called an ambulance and asked to take her; after that, she allegedly was unable to open the door by herself," – Anastasia told Yuport news portal. Local media outlets have noted that the Nizhnevartovsk Mayor used to be a Deputy Head of the Administration for Combating Organized Crime for the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous District of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) of the Russian Federation; he is a MIA colonel and maintains close ties with law enforcement structures.  

On December 3, the Nizhnevartovsk City Court has ruled to release Elena Yatsenko from the psychoneurological dispensary. Then Andrei Milyaev, a Deputy of the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous District Duma, addressed the Prosecutor’s Office and Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation (ICR) requesting to verify the legitimacy of actions committed by the medics and policemen involved into the hospitalization of Elena Yatsenko. 

“After receiving a complaint from Anastasia Yatsenko, I submitted respective inquiries to the law enforcement structures in order to carry out a probe and fully clarify the existing situation. According to the complainant, nobody had provided consent to break the door, while Elena Yatsenko hadn’t called the medical institution,” – the Deputy told The CrimeRussia

Version № 2. Rescue 

Olga Abmaikina, an official MIA representative, claims that on November 26, the Nizhnevartovsk police had indeed assisted PND medics in the hospitalization of Elena Yatsenko. Prior to this, the woman has called the psychoneurological dispensary and said that she was about to commit suicide. 

"On the same evening, police officers and medics arrived at the woman's home. The apartment door was locked. Later, it became known that the woman was not alone in the apartment – but with a friend. Both of them were under the influence of alcohol. They did not open the door. Taking the situation, a decision has been made to break the door. For that purpose, officers of the Ministry of the Russian Federation for Civil Defense, Emergencies and Elimination of Consequences of Natural Disasters (EMERCOM) were summoned. The door was broken in the presence of witnesses. Relatives of the property owner, including her daughter, were notified that the door had to be broken," – Olga Abmaikina told Znak.com

PND representatives stick to the same version. Olga Zhevelik, Chief Physician of the PND, told RIA Novosti news agency that Elena has called the reception office from her phone and said that she was dying. According to the doctor, her further speech was incoherent – nothing could be understood from it.

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Olga Zhevelik, Chief Physician of the PND

The Chief Physician claims that Yatsenko was unwilling to stay in the dispensary and no treatment was provided to her – only psychologists had communicated with the patient. "I have her medical case in front of me. At the time of the admission, she was under the influence of alcohol and in the state of psychomotor agitation. I am very sorry about what has happened to her. I and other personnel take this hard. We tried to comply with ethical standards. She said that she agrees to undergo treatment – but not in this institution. She signed a refusal. We have complied with the dates set forth in the law: from November 26 to December 3. Immediately after the court hearing, she was released," – Zhevelik said.

Her deputy Oleg Grinchenko confirmed that the hospital had acted within the legal framework. His answers to other questions were evasive.

ICR takes the case

Anastasia Yatsenko and lawyer Murad Osmanov addressed the Investigations Department in the City of Nizhnevartovsk of the ICR. The daughter has filed a criminal complaint against the illegal confinement of her mother. Osmanov confirmed to RIA Novosti that the investigators have launched a probe. The Regional ICR Directorate has also confirmed this and advised that the legitimacy of the actions committed by the police officers and PND personnel is currently under scrutiny.

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Дочь Анастасия Яценко и адвокат Мурад Османов

“The PND representatives have only presented to the court a conclusion of the commission stating that Elena was admitted to the dispensary being heavily intoxicated. They also claimed that she had developed mental and behavioral disorders due to the abuse of alcohol. But this was just a verbal statement. According to the documents, her blood and urine samples were taken – but the medics haven’t provided test results to the court, as well as the examination acts. They couldn’t even tell me whether such documents actually exist,” – the attorney says. 

The CrimeRussia possesses copies of all court documents pertaining to the case of Yatsenko. An interesting detail: PND doctors issued a certificate stating that Elena Yatsenko can’t attend the court session for health reasons – so, the hearing was held in the dispensary.

“I have plenty of witnesses who saw me sober, in the right mind, walking in the room and corridors, never drunk. Now it seems funny to me – but at that time, staying in one room with disabled people, I was trying to figure out in despair: why had they locked me up? I thought that they were going to turn me into a vegetable and tried to understand: how may I harm them?” – Elena Yatsenko says in defense.

Lawyer Osmanov claims, citing his sources, that the law enforcement authorities possess results of the financial audit of the psychoneurological dispensary; the investigators have to verify this information as well. 

“Apparently, this refers to some paid services rendered by the institution. I suppose that the investigators want Yatsenko to provide some explanations – she had worked there for ten years and knows a lot. It can’t be ruled out that her testimonies may affect PND operations. However, no one can say anything specific at this point; the investigation has to check everything,” – Osmanov says. 

The CrimeRussia will continue monitoring the situation.

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