Police officers discharged firearms in separate incidents in New Taipei City and Taichung City in the last two days, and three people were injured by police bullets.
At around 11:00 pm Thursday, March 10, police in Zhonghe District, New Taipei City, attempted to pull over a driver of a silver Mercedes Benz bearing a false license plate. The 22-year-old driver, named Lin, sped up and attempted to escape. A chase ensued for around twenty minutes until the car, containing three passengers as well as the driver, was temporarily blocked by cars waiting at a red light at the intersection of Jinping Road and Zhongzheng Road.
A police officer exited the patrol car and attempted to approach the suspect’s vehicle. Lin then sideswiped another vehicle and forced his way through the traffic jam. The officer fired several shots at the Mercedes as it turned the corner and sped away.
Police continued the chase until the driver stopped in a lane and called out to the police officers for help. A 27-year-old man, named Zhong, who was sitting in the back seat of Lin’s car had a bullet wound to his head, and was unconscious and bleeding profusely. A bullet hole was clearly visible in the shattered rear windshield.
Zhong was rushed to hospital where he underwent surgery. However, doctors were unable to remove the bullet, and Zhong remains in a critical condition with a Glasgow Coma Index of 5. Doctors give Zhong a 10% chance of survival, and fear that even if he survives he will remain in a vegetative state.
Zhong’s mother accuses police of “improper law enforcement,” and speaking to media yesterday, said that she did not accept the police claim that the officer had “shot at the tires” of the vehicle. Zhong’s mother said that her son did not have a criminal record, as some media had incorrectly reported, and that he had just been going out with friends for drinks.
As for Lin, he claimed that he attempted to escape from the police check because he did not have a driver’s license, his vehicle registration had expired, and he had purchased a fake license plate online.
2 people shot in Taichung City
One of five suspects in a vehicle was shot in the abdomen, and an innocent bystander on a motor scooter suffered a bullet wound to her foot after police officers fired eight shots while attempting to arrest a group of five suspects in Dali District, Taichung City yesterday afternoon.
Plain clothes police detectives went to a motel in Dali District to investigate 5 suspects in a drugs case at around 3:00 pm. By the time police arrived, the suspects had just left. Police located the suspect’s white Mercedes Benz as it left a nearby fuel station.
When the officers surrounded the vehicle, the driver reversed into a vehicle behind. Police “shot at the tires” of the vehicle. A suspect sitting in the back seat was hit by a bullet in the abdomen, and a woman on a motor scooter beside the vehicle hit in the foot.
On officer quickly went to the woman’s assistance and helped her move away from the suspect’s vehicle. Officers then dragged the suspects out of the car and handcuffed them.
The two injured people were rushed to Dali Ren’ai Hospital. A search of the vehicle turned up a quantity of drugs including amphetamines and drug coffee packs.
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