Police failed to protect nurse murdered by her ex: committee

Linda van der Giesen (Photo: Facebook)Linda van der Giesen (Photo: Facebook)

The police misjudged the danger Linda van der Giesen was in before she was murdered by her ex-boyfriend last year, according to the committee that investigated the events leading up to her death. There were various moments in which the police could have intervened and protected the Brabant woman after she reported that her ex was threatening her, the Eenhoorn committee concludes.

The Eenhoorn-committee investigated the internal police procedures that preceded Van der Giesen's death, the Telegraaf reports.

Van der Giesen was gunned down in August last year. The shooting happened in broad daylight in the parking lot of the TweeSteden hospital in Waalwijk, where she worked as a plastic surgery nurse. Her ex-boyfriend, John F., turned himself in a day after the murder and later confessed to killing Van der Giesen.

It soon became clear that Van der Giesen reported to the police that her ex was threatening and harassing her. She also stated that he was buying a gun.

The Eenhoorn committee concludes that the police should have intervened when Van der Giesen reported the harassment. While there is no guarantee that intervention could have prevented the murder, the police should have acted more adequately.

"The question is whether the estimation error was avoidable and if so, whether someone can be blamed." committee chairman Bas Eenhoorn said at the presentation of the report, according to the newspaper.

The report blames the errors on a combination of three factors. Firstly a fragmentation of the police process that led to no one feeling responsible for the safety of the victim. Secondly a lack of focus on the criminal justice process. And thirdly problems in accessing information..

"Through inadequate transmission of information, we came to the conclusion that an estimation error was indeed made, which could not have avoided the murder, but at least measures could be taken to protect the victim better than what happened." Eenhoorn stated. He added that 8 out of 10 questions on the stalking checklist was answered "yes" in this case, which should have led to increased protection. "But again: There is no guarantee that the murder could have been prevented."

At this stage the Public Prosecutor sees no reason to prosecute individual police officers in this case.