15 Oct 2016
The doctor was tackled to the ground, handcuffed, and brought to the police station for questioning.
The Health Ministry has ordered a probe on the alleged assault by personnel of the Federal Special Task Force on Organised Crime (Stafoc) on a doctor – who was tackled to the ground and detained after being mistaken as a robber on 7 October.
The doctor was at a food stall in Hospital Serdang when police fully-clad in tactical gear, balaclava and carrying heavy firearms raided the eatery following a tip-off that seven suspects behind an earlier robbery case in Kajang were in the same premise. Startled and unable to identify that the men were the police, the 28-year-old immediately tried to flee the area, but was tackled to the ground by a Stafoc personnel who had mistaken him for being one of the robbers – despite his doctor’s attire.
He was subsequently handcuffed and taken to Sri Serdang police station for further questioning, even after a senior doctor at the scene vouched for him.
Denied medical aid for three hours
According to the doctor, his requests to seek treatment were rejected until after the three-hour interrogation, despite reportedly suffering from injuries following the incident. Even then, after returning Hospital Serdang for necessary treatment, he was immediately escorted back to the police station, and was only released at 3am after his father, who is also a policeman, came to the station to bail him out.
The doctor has since made a police report on the incident, to which Sepang police chief ACP Abdul Aziz Ali responded, stating that the case was under investigation.
“The complainant alleged that he was roughed up by members of the raiding party and the incident had brought him embarrassment,” he said.
“I can assure him that a comprehensive probe is ongoing and whoever was involved (in the case) will not be spared (of action),” he added. “While the investigations are progressing, we urge the public not to make speculations about the case.”
Deputy Health DG: The doctor should have notified his superior of his whereabouts
The incident was “very unfortunate”, according to Health Ministry deputy director-general (medical) Datuk Dr S. Jeyaindran.
However, he added, the doctor should have observed hospital standard operating procedure (SOP) by notifying his colleagues when he went for his break.
“We are not saying do not take breaks… but by notifying his superior, it can save a lot of issues when a problem like this occurs. It is all about accountability,” he said, adding that the doctor’s superiors were unaware of the incident until the police called to verify the doctor’s identity.
Sepang police chief: Incident a misunderstanding and a “genuine mistake”
Fingers should not be pointed at the police force as they were carrying out their responsibilities, said Jeyaindran who added that a preliminary report revealed that the task force reacted when the doctor defied police orders to stop leaving the scene.
“When he fell and the police caught up with him, he allegedly started punching the policemen, leaving the police no choice but to apprehend him. He told them he is doctor but the police took him to the police station to verify this,” said Jeyaindran.
“I believe this is part of police procedures and they were observing their SOP. At that point they are not sure who he really is,” he said, adding that any person could be carrying stethoscopes or wearing blue surgical scrubs.
An unnamed source also agreed that the policemen were not at fault.
“They are trained to aggressively pursue criminals and successfully carry out what the general police personnel may not be capable of. There (is) little margin for error. Hence, when they arrive, it is all about ensuring the pursued criminals are caught and they are trained to go after anyone who raises their suspicion or attempts to run away from them,” said the source.
“Had one of them escaped, it would be considered an incomplete job executed by the raiding team.”
“I think in the end of the day, this should be treated as a learning experience for both the police and us,” said Jeyaindran of the incident. MIMS
Link – http://today.mims.com/topic/hospital-serdang-doctor-mistakenly-identified-as-robber–allegedly-assaulted-by-police