PETALING JAYA, May 17 — Post-mortem reports suggest that two men gunned down by police in a shootout in Cheras last year were kneeling when they were shot, lawyers acting for the deceased duo’s families said today.
N. Surendran, also Padang Serai MP, said that most of the multiple gunshot wounds on the victims’ bodies had downward trajectories, which he alleges contradicts police version of events that one of the men had been shooting at the police from their car while being chased.
“If the police said they opened fire at them, how is it that the bullet pathway is downwards?” Surendran said at PKR’s headquarters here today.
“This means that the two victims were possibly kneeling or on the ground when they were shot. In any case, it cannot have been a shootout with the police,” he added.
The three men ― Noor Azman Othman, 39, Aidi Noor Hafizal Othman, 24, and Saufi Ahmad, 23 ― died after they were shot by police at Billion Park on the morning of April 14 last year.
Kuala Lumpur Criminal Investigation Department chief Datuk Ku Chin Wah had reportedly said that they were being chased on suspicion of robbing a jewellery store in Shah Alam a week earlier.
However, the father of the Othman brothers told reporters at the news conference today that he was not satisfied with the police’s explanation and actions.
“If someone is a suspect, do you need to kill them? Supposedly a suspect is just a suspect, you don’t know if they are really guilty or not?” he said.
He also questioned whether the suspects had shot at the police first, saying that he had asked the police for evidence of the pistol they had purportedly fired, but that they had not been able to show it to him.
Surendran also said that if it was indeed true that one of the suspects had shot at the police, the latter’s reaction was out of proportion in deterring them.
“Noor Azman was shot eight times, not just once or two times. If the police just wanted to stop them from shooting at the police, why do you need to riddle the body with bullets?”
The lawyer also said the autopsy report on Aidi Noor makes it even more irrefutable that it had not in fact been a direct shootout between the men and the police because one of the three bullets his body took had entered via an upward trajectory.
Surendran also pointed to the abrasions and lacerations found on Aidi’s face and chest, saying that they were indicative of a struggle between the police and the suspects.
“The pathologist’s report suggests that the victims were taken alive… that they were kneeling or on the ground… that they were shot from a direction above and at close range,” he said.
Surendran said he had only received the autopsy reports in February this year due to a delay by hospital authorities.
He said all the evidence currently available pointed to “solid evidence of murder” and made a fresh demand for an immediate, independent investigation into the deaths of the three men upon the revelation of the new medical evidence.
BY EMILY DING, The Malaysian Insider 17 May 2013