Russian investigators in the southern city of Belgorod opened a criminal probe Saturday in the case of a hospital patient who died after he was punched in the face by a doctor.
Authorities announced the probe days after the December 29 incident, which was recorded on security video that aired on YouTube and was later seen on Russian national television.
In the video, a man in medical garb drags a male patient from an examination table while asking him, "Why did you touch the nurse?" He then pushes the middle-age male through a doorway.
When the patient re-enters the room, the doctor is seen striking a single blow to his face and the victim falls backward onto the floor. The doctor is also seen pummeling a second man who authorities say accompanied the patient to the hospital.
Medical personnel then try to revive the motionless patient, before picking up and carrying him from camera view.
Authorities said that the patient, 56, died from brain trauma after hitting the floor, and that the doctor struck him in the face after the patient allegedly kicked a nurse during an earlier procedure.
If found guilty of causing death through negligence, the physician faces a two-year prison term.