Authorities in Ho Chi Minh City have confirmed that a local police officer fired a gun on duty and caused the death of a young man who was following illegal street racers in on Sunday afternoon.
Nguyen Huu Hue, deputy head of the police department of a ward in District 12, Ho Chi Minh City, claimed that he unintentionally killed 19-year-old Tran Van Kiet, citing a malfunction of his gun.
At around 2:00 pm on Sunday, Hue received reports that a pack of young people were hindering traffic at a crossroads on the National Route 1 section running through District 12 in an effort to have an illegal rally, according to police records.
Hue arrived at a spot near the intersection and found several dozen motorcycles racing while spreading themselves in all lanes, zigzagging and yelling.
Following them to the junction, he saw a group of men on around five motorbikes blocking cars for the street racers to make a U-turn and run on the other carriageway.
Hue, carried by another officer known as Duy on a motorbike during the entire patrol, shot two bullets into the air in an attempt to disperse the crowd and intended to fire another time but a cartridge was stuck.
While he was pointing the gun to the road and pulling the bolt to deal with the jam, the gun went off, somehow sending the third bullet into the head of Kiet, the victim.
Hue and Duy continued to chase the racer group for a while until the members ran to different roads.
Hue later learned that Kiet instantly fell off his motorcycle after the shot, taken to two hospitals and died later on the same day.
Police found a bullet-like metal object fixed in his skull.
The victim’s body was then carried to his hometown in the central Vietnamese province of Quang Nam, according to Thanh Nien (Young) newspaper.
The case is still under further investigation.