Two men in Turkey will spend the rest of their lives behind bars for their role in the rape and murder of a 17-year-old high school student.
A Turkish court ruled this week that the victim, Gamze Acar, was brutally raped by Riza Dogan at a hotel near the Turkish capital Ankara, Yahoo Australia reported.
Dogan, with the help of accomplice Mustafa Emre Demiral, who was in the room at the time, then hurled Acar to her death off the fifth-floor hotel balcony on Dec. 7, 2020, so she could never tell she had been raped, the court found.
Three other defendants, identified as Mehmet Doğan, Emre Eker and Hüseyin Emre Gürgen, were acquitted due to a lack of evidence.
A day before her death, Acar was lured to the hotel thinking she was being interviewed for a job she had seen online.
The five defendants had introduced themselves as “timeshare company employees” at the time, the Public Prosecutor’s Office said.
Some of the hotel rooms were on the market as timeshares, according to Turkish media, but it is unclear if the defendants worked for the company that owned them.
The timeshare company, which has not been named, has denied posting the advertisement, The Sun reported.
Dogan had offered the victim cannabis, but she declined, the court heard. The five defendants drank alcohol all evening.
The following morning, there was a disturbance in the hotel room before the victim screamed as she was thrown from the hotel balcony to her death.
Initially, Dogan alleged that Acar had killed herself. However, investigators were unable to find any of her fingerprints on the balcony railing. Further, the railing was too high for the 17-year-old to jump over without touching it, authorities said.
Acar’s pants were also reportedly found unbuttoned at the scene of her death.
Broken objects and glass were found scattered around the hotel room, an indication that a struggle had occurred there.
“Gamze was found with her trouser buttons opened. This wasn’t suicide, it was murder,” Murat Yilmaz, the victim’s uncle, said at the time of his niece’s death, according to Yahoo News.
“She was a person full of life. They beat her at night and people heard the screams. Those who heard something have left a statement. The truth will come out,” he added.
Dogan was given an aggravated life sentence for “deliberate killing,” meaning he will serve a minimum of 30 years in prison.
In addition to this, he was sentenced to a further 17 years for sexual assault and nine years for deprivation of liberty.
Demiral was also handed an aggravated life sentence for deliberate killing and nine years for deprivation of liberty.
Prosecutors could not determine if he had participated in the sexual assault.