Police trying to reconstruct sequence of events in five-star hotel

Sahil Peerzada, fiancé of the U.S. national who was allegedly molested by Luke Pomersbach in a five-star hotel suite here, on Monday claimed that the Australian cricketer first punched him when he politely asked him to leave the room after he misbehaved with his fiancée.

After discharge from Primus Hospital here in the afternoon, Sahil told the media that Pomersbach initially invited him to his room. However, he declined the offer as he was tired. But “he followed us to our room. My friend (Miraz) opened the door. We went inside and within five minutes, he misbehaved (with his fiancée),” he said.

Sahil said he then asked the cricketer to leave. “He pushed me,” Sahil alleged, adding that was how the scuffle broke out.

Hearing the commotion, Miraz and another friend Moiz, who was taking a shower in another room, rushed in and confronted the cricketer. Pomersbach then retreated, leaving Sahil in the room bleeding from the left ear. “Miraz later took Sahil to Primus Hospital where he underwent surgery,” said a police officer. After Sahil's fiance raised an alarm, hotel authorities deployed a guard outside her suite.

Pomersbach returned after a while. “Footage of a camera installed in the elevator has revealed that he was accompanied by Bangalore Royal Challengers player K. P. Appanna. The accused then went to her room and banged the door in a bid to make a forced entry,” said the officer. The victim later alleged that Appanna had threatened her with dire consequences if she did not withdraw her complaint against Pomersbach.

However, in a statement to the police, Appanna has denied issuing a threat and said he was not present there at the time of the incident. But the victim has alleged that Appanna first tried to force open the door and then Pomersbach made a vain attempt to enter the room.

The leg-spinner, who plays for Karnataka in the Ranji Trophy, on Monday visited the Patiala House courts complex apparently to seek legal advice.

Meanwhile, the police have contacted Miraz, who left for Mumbai soon after the incident. “He is expected to be here on Tuesday for getting his statement recorded. We have also sought a list of guests who had attended the party at the hotel, where Pomersbach first met the victim. Efforts are being made to reconstruct the entire sequence of events leading up to the incident, with the help of statements from witnesses, the hotel staff, the victim and her fiancé, besides the CCTV footage,” said the officer.

The police were trying to identify the others, who, according to the victim, had threatened to kill her if she did not retract the complaint against the Australian cricketer.

In another development, Pomersbach submitted in a court here the details of a second person who is standing surety for him. The court, while granting Pomersbach bail, had asked him to submit a personal bond for Rs. 30,000 along with two sureties for a like amount.

On Saturday, the cricketer had only one surety and his counsel promised the court that the second surety would be brought on Monday.

(With inputs by Jiby Kattakayam)

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