HONG KONG - A government spokesman on Friday expressed great sorrow and regret over the death of a student of the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) and extended sympathies to his family.
Police didn't enter the car park or use any tear gas in there when the fall happened
In the early hours of Nov 4, Chow Tsz-lok, 22, fell from the third floor of a car park in Tseung Kwan O to its second floor. He passed away around 8 am on Friday.
According to Queen Elizabeth Hospital, which confirmed the student's death, Chow suffered from severe brain injury after falling from height.
The HKUST also expressed deep sadness over the death of the student and extended sympathies to the bereaved family, adding that the university calls on students to remain calm and exercise restraint at this sad time to avoid further conflicts and even tragedies.
After 2 pm, people in black started defacing structures and went on a vandalizing spree across the university campus
Masked protesters clad in black flooded the HKUST campus by Friday afternoon.
With the campus tense and as a mark of respect to the deceased student, HKUST cancelled a scheduled graduation ceremony and suspended classes in the afternoon. The university advised visitors to vacate the campus and arranged shuttle buses for them.
After 2 pm, people in black started defacing structures and went on a vandalizing spree across the university campus. The residence of HKUST President Wei Shyy, Starbucks outlets, Bank of China branches and other facilities bore the brunt of their ire.
Jay Wang, 24, a PhD candidate at HKUST's School of Science, condoled Chow’s death. Wang didn't know the deceased student personally but joined the president to mourn Chow for one minute when the graduation ceremony opened in the morning.
Wang worried that Chow’s death might add to current tensions and hoped students on the campus would stay safe. He condemned some radicals and students who chose to exploit the tragedy for political gains.
Wang resented how they used Chow’s death to spread rumors and unleashed violence against the school and the government. “Is this really the way to champion human rights?” he said.
After initial investigation, police said on Tuesday that they believed that the young man fell from the third floor to the second floor of the car park between 0:45 and 1:00 am local time
Police earlier said they attached great importance to the incident and was conducting a comprehensive investigation with a view to finding out what really happened.
According to police, on Nov 5, officers were dispersing some 100 radicals blocking roads about 120 meters from the building that houses the car park. Police didn't enter the car park or use any tear gas there when the fall happened. Police entered the car park later and found that paramedics were attending the injured student.
It is still unclear how Chow fell from the third floor to the second floor of the car park, police said after scouring surveillance footage.
After initial investigation, police said on Tuesday that they believed that the young man fell from the third floor to the second floor of the car park between 0:45 and 1:00 am local time.
According to Senior Superintendent Foo Yat-ting of Hong Kong Police Forces Kowloon East Region, police entered the car park shortly after 1:00 am local time to disperse protesters who threw hard objects such as bricks and glass bottles from height at police officers.
At least 10 minutes before police entered the car park, a group of firefighters arrived to deal with a fire alarm in the car park, and was then informed by a man at the scene about the injured young man.
With Xinhua inputs
HONG KONG NEWS