Military investigators opened a criminal case Tuesday against an officer who told a conscript who suffered severe acid burns on his watch to go for a jog to numb the pain instead of calling for urgent medical assistance.
Investigators said in a statement on their website that the officer, identified as Senior Lieutenant Alexander Khvostov, would be charged with negligence, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.
The charges relate to a Sept. 27 incident in which soldiers under Khvostov were loading 25-liter canisters of battery acid onto a KamAZ truck at a Primorye region Army base.
While troops were loading the acid, the lid of one of the canisters came loose, and its contents poured over Private Nikita Akishin, who suffered severe burns on 17 percent of his body, including his face, neck, right arm and rib cage.
A representative for the Eastern Military District said at the time that the soldier was to blame for the accident and that he had been provided with immediate medical care.
But Akishin’s sister subsequently told Interfax that her brother had to wait two hours for doctors to arrive and examine him.
Akishin’s sister said that her brother tried to wash himself in a puddle and asked for professional medical help, adding that the T-shirt and gloves he was wearing were completely destroyed by the acid.
Akishin’s sister said Khvostov then said the loading work was a priority and told Akishin to “run around the camp and get some fresh air so that you don’t feel the pain.”