Peng Chau shooting officer "felt life was threatened" - RTHK
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Peng Chau shooting officer "felt life was threatened"

2023-01-25 HKT 15:31
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  • Peng Chau shooting officer "felt life was threatened"
Police on Wednesday defended an officer's decision to open fire at a man on Peng Chau on Tuesday night, saying he felt his life was under threat.

The man who was shot was in critical condition in hospital on Wednesday.

The force said two officers went to a flat on Wing On Street to handle a noise complaint, stemming from a barbecue gathering. They said it was the second complaint about the same location that night.

Police allege that a 43-year-old man, who they say appeared to be drunk, put his hand on an officer's neck and didn't stop despite warnings. The officer then fired three shots, and the man was wounded in his hand and waist.

At a media briefing, police said the suspect was 1.8 metres tall, and the officer feared for his safety.

"In this situation, our officer followed our use of force guidelines," said Au Yeung Ki, an acting marine police superintendent.

"After an initial probe, we feel that the colleague may indeed feel his life was under threat, and he may be seriously wounded. It was suitable for him to use his gun."

Au Yeung said the initial finding was that the man allegedly attacked the officer with his bare hands, though police will continue investigating whether he had a weapon.

Danny Li, a detective inspector in the marine regional crime unit, set out how the guidelines worked.

"One of the factors is the perceptions of the police officer ... at that moment, I'm sure that my officer had the perception that he may suffer from death or seriously bodily injuries, so he has discharged his firearm. And this reason is justified."

Au Yeung said another 33-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of obstructing and assaulting police. The two are both Philippines nationals with Hong Kong ID cards.

Police said the officer who opened fire has been in the force for more than three decades, and it was the first time he fired a shot.

The man with gunshot wounds to his hand and waist was flown to Eastern Hospital by helicopter. He was said to be in critical condition.

Two officers were slightly injured and sent to Ruttonjee Hospital.
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Last updated: 2023-01-25 HKT 16:03