MALAYSIA: Malaysian authorities have shifted the focus of their inquiry into a recent altercation involving police officers and an individual suspected of drug addiction in Langkawi, which has now been reclassified as a murder case, resulting in the individual’s death.
According to the state police chief Datuk Fisol Salleh, they have initiated an investigation under Sections 302 and 304 of the Penal Code, Section 302 pertains to the charge of murder.
Initially, the case was categorized as a sudden death after the individual was declared deceased by a hospital on 1 February, as reported by local news outlet The Star.
“During the arrest, a scuffle broke out, resulting in the suspect sustaining injuries to the right temple, ear, hand, knee, and left neck. One officer and three police personnel also suffered minor injuries,” he disclosed during a press conference at the Kedah police contingent headquarters on 6 February.
The incident took place at Ayer Hangat petrol station in Langkawi, Kedah, on 29 January.
Fisol also disclosed that the police discovered a straw containing 0.21g of suspected heroin powder in the front pocket of the suspect’s trousers.
The suspect was transported to the Langkawi IPD for further processing, and his urine test returned positive for morphine.
At 8pm on the same day, the suspect was apprehended and taken to the Kuah health clinic.
While at the clinic, the suspect collapsed and lost consciousness and was subsequently referred to Hospital Sultanah Maliha, Langkawi, where he was admitted to the red zone.
By approximately 12.40 pm on 1 February, the hospital informed authorities that the suspect had passed away.
Fisol stated that the autopsy conducted at Hospital Sultanah Bahiyah revealed that the deceased had succumbed to blunt-force trauma to the head.
Investigation launched to uncover circumstances surrounding suspect’s death
“In light of this, an investigation has been initiated to determine the actual circumstances leading to the suspect’s death. I have also instructed officers from the state police contingent to take over the case to ensure a thorough investigation,” Fisol said.
He further noted that statements from 13 witnesses, including the involved police officer and personnel, have been documented.
Additionally, authorities have reached out to the victim’s family members and are awaiting a comprehensive report from the hospital.
Viral arrest videos spark family’s quest for answers amid allegations of police brutality
Videos capturing the arrest went viral on social media, gaining heightened attention following the revelation of the suspect’s death by the suspect’s sister on her Facebook page.
The family of the deceased also sought justice and demanded an explanation from the police regarding the incident on 5 February.
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