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Lt. Col. arrested in wife’s shooting

The Athurugiriya police yesterday arrested a Lieutenant Colonel over a shooting incident at Malabe which left his wife with near fatal injuries, police said.

Lt Col Nettasinghe Arachchilage Pradeep Kumara Nettasinghe (47) attached to the Gajaba Regiment and currently serving with the army detachment deployed at the Mahinda Rajapaksa Nelum Pokuna Theatre was produced before Kaduwela Magistrate yesterday afternoon and was remanded.

The suspect has confessed to police that he shot his wife and then threw the pistol into Diyawanna Lake near the Japan-Sri Lanka Friendship Road in the vicinity of Parliament on Saturday night. Police with the assistance of Navy divers recovered the firearm.

Police checked his mobile phone records and found that he had been present near the house where the shooting took place on Saturday. Yesterday the army officer confessed to his crime and his driver, too, had divulged some vital information, police said.

The Lt Col told police that he regreted what he had done. The couple lived separately as their divorce case was pending.

The driver told police that he had been instructed by the Lt Col to drive him to his wife’s house at Isurupura in Pittugala Malabe on Saturday night. "After dropping him I was asked to wait. I was walking up and down the road as I had nothing to do. Sometimes later, the Lt Col came and asked to drive him back to Colombo. On our way back I was told to stop the car near the Japan-Sri Lanka Friendship Road. He threw a pistol into the lake and ordered me not to tell anyone of the incident.

The victim wife, 43-year-old Nayana Fernando, who sustained injuries to her abdomen and a hand is being treated at the National hospital, Colombo.