Scooter rider without helmet shot dead in police chase

The China Post news staff

TAIPEI, Taiwan — Police have begun investigating a shooting case in which a scooter rider with a concealed license plate was shot in the head and died after he and his partner refused to stop for a police check in Taipei County. The incident took place at around 5:17 a.m. early morning yesterday on Zhonghua Road, Sanchong City. A patrol car was dispatched at 4 a.m. from Luzhou Police Station to help chase down a suspected stolen car on a run. When the car sped from Bali Township toward the direction of Sanchong, the Luzhou police patrol car joined the chase for a planned interception.

After losing track of the car and while heading back to the station, the officers spotted a scooter rider and passenger traveling without safety helmets. The officers signalled for them to stop for a check after noting the scooter’s license plate had been covered by a towel. But motorcyclist Zhou Shih-hung, 18, tried to speed away. Police fired six warning shots and Wu Ting-nan fell off the back seat, while Zhou escaped. Wu, aged 20 with prior criminal records, was pronounced dead after being taken to hospital. Doctors said he died of severe wounds from a bullet in the back of his head. Police officers insisted they fired only warning shots into the sky, without aiming at either Zhou or Wu. The initial probe showed an air conditioner at a building was hit by one of the bullets. Wu may have been struck by a stray bullet returning to the ground. A senior police officer said an internal investigation and ballistic test, as well as footage taken from security cameras in the area will help determine the truth.