KUANTAN: After a two-hour high-speed car chase along the East Coast Highway here early yesterday, a man with a string of criminal records was gunned down while a policeman suffered injuries during the shoot-out.
The suspect, Chiang Hon Hing, 39, was killed in an exchange of fire with the police, while Lance Corporal Mohd Jarizan Md Jid suffered injuries on the right hand. He has been admitted to Tengku Ampuan Afzan Hospital (HTAA) here.
The 1am incident unfolded when two police personnel attached to the highway patrol unit spotted a Honda parked at the Lanchang toll exit, near Temerloh, and went to check.
Chiang suddenly got out of the vehicle, pulled out a gun from his waist and started shooting at them. The policemen fired several shots at Chiang, who ran towards the highway patrol unit's Mitsubishi Pajero. He sped off in the vehicle towards Kuantan.
The highway patrol unit alerted the state police headquarters, who were soon joined by another police patrol team and the traffic police in pursuit of the suspect.
Chiang later stopped next to a Proton Waja. He was believed to have used a gun to threaten two men into abandoning the car before hijacking it.
As he was driving towards the Jabor toll plaza, he came upon a police roadblock and tried to make a U-turn.
Realising that he had been cornered, Chiang stopped the car and started shooting at the police, injuring Jarizan. Police returned fire and Chiang was seriously wounded.
State police chief Datuk Sharifuddin Ab Ghani said Chiang, from Bandar Baru Sentul, succumbed to his injuries in the ambulance. He was pronounced dead upon arriving at HTAA at 3.30am.
Sharifuddin said police recovered a 9mm Beretta, a semi-automatic pistol, which was believed to have been used by the suspect during the shoot-out, and three bullets.
Inside the Honda car, which was reported stolen in Kuantan on Friday night, police found another magazine loaded with six bullets.
Sharifuddin said the suspect was on the police wanted list for vehicle theft, voluntarily obstructing a public servant from discharging his duties, drug offences and a murder case in Taman Melawati, Cheras.
"The police are investigating if the suspect is part of a syndicate and if there are others who have been working with him."
When met at HTAA yesterday, Jarizan, who had a bullet pierced through his right arm, said he was lucky to be alive and accepted the incident as part of his job as a policeman.
The 24-year, who had earlier undergone an operation at HTAA, said the incident would not prevent him from serving the force and hoped to return to work soon.