Khar teen case: Forensic team believes an accidental death unlikely | Mumbai News – Times of India

MUMBAI: A forensic team that on Saturday carried out a reconstruction of the crime scene in connection with teenager Jhanvi Kukreja’s death is not convinced it was an accidental fall.
Kukreja (19) had been to Bhagwati Heights in Khar (W) for a New Year’s Eve party on the terrace with Shree Jogdhankar and Diya Padalkar. Her body was found on the ground floor with a skull fracture and multiple injuries.
Jogdhankar and Padalkar were present at Bhagwati Heights on Saturday, where verification of their statements was attempted through the reconstruction.
The forensic team and police prepared a dummy of the same height and weight as Kukreja. What happened between the second and ground floors on the dimly-lit staircase has been a mystery as there were bloodstains all over but no cameras or witnesses.
The dummy was placed at the top and attempts were made to see where it landed. “It was to verify if the dummy landed at spots where bloodstains were found. The injuries were represented in the form of a powder for reconstruction of the crime. Injuries sustained in an accidental fall will differ from those in a homicide,” said an officer.
Late on Saturday, medical teams (one reconstructed the crime scene, another conducted Kukreja’s autopsy and a third examined Jogdhankar and Padalkar for injuries) went into a huddle with their findings. The teams will help police draw up a sequence of events.
Padalkar’s family told police she has to see a psychiatrist after what she went through, and her father met doctors at Cooper Hospital. Jogdhankar’s lawyer, Ganesh Gupta, said the big question remains as to how a bigger and older boy (Jogdhankar is 22 while the victim was a teen) could have suffered serious injuries, including a fracture. Jogdhankar was discharged from hospital on Thursday evening but has not recovered fully, Gupta said.
Once the accused are remanded to judicial custody, police will seek court permission for a lie detector test on Jogdhankar, after his consent. Police are awaiting blood and urine test reports of guests at the party, which will confirm if drugs had been consumed.
On Friday, the investigating officer, inspector Dilip Utekar, tested positive for Covid-19, so the probe has been handed over to senior inspector Gajanan Kabdule.
Kukreja’s lawyer, Trivan Karnani, said the family wanted a change of public prosecutor at the pre-trial stage and wants a special public prosecutor to be appointed. “We will assist a competent SPP to work towards speedy and fair justice,” Karnani said.

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