Accessibility links

When An Emoticon Doesn't Work In Your Favor

Especially when you're on thin ice already. From The Moscow Times:

We may never know the degree of sorrow felt by a young Novosibirsk woman over the traffic cop she struck and killed with her car while driving drunk. But a senior traffic safety official said the "cynicism" of the suspect is exemplified by the text message - complete with emoticon - she sent her boyfriend after killing the officer:

"Honey, I killed a cop. I'm sorry :( What should I do?"

This depressing tale began on the evening of April 30, when, police say, the 22-year-old woman had a drinking bout with a girlfriend. The young women downed six liters of beer between them before deciding to go for a joyride on the streets of Novosibirsk.

At around 11:00 p.m. that evening, local traffic police officer Dmitry Chulkov, 36, had pulled over two cars for moving violations on Ulitsa Ippodromskaya in the Siberian city. He was walking toward one of the cars to issue a fine when he was struck and killed by a Toyota driven by the suspect, whose name has not been released but whose photograph was posted on the regional traffic police's web site.

Witnesses said the suspect drove a bit further before pulling over, though she never exited her car. As it turns out, she was sending the text message to her boyfriend, who advised her to create a "scandal and don't say or sign anything."

Top regional traffic cop Sergei Shtelmakh was incensed at the suspect's behavior, saying that she appeared more concerned about her damaged car than the police officer's death. The text message also angered Shtelmakh.

More grizzly details here.

-- Luke Allnutt

About This Blog

Written by RFE/RL editors and correspondents, Transmission serves up news, comment, and the odd silly dictator story. While our primary concern is with foreign policy, Transmission is also a place for the ideas -- some serious, some irreverent -- that bubble up from our bureaus. The name recognizes RFE/RL's role as a surrogate broadcaster to places without free media. You can write us at

Show comments