Not the first time: A list of police station attacks over the years

Five notable cases that paint a grim picture of the challenges encountered by the police force.

17 May 2024 02:32pm
Photo for illustrative purposes only.
Photo for illustrative purposes only.

SHAH ALAM – This morning, the nation was shocked by the news of two policemen killed while another was injured when they were attacked by an intruder at the Ulu Tiram police station in the early hour.

Sadly, this is not the first incident which took place at police stations which highlighted not only the dangers faced by law enforcement officers but also the varied motivations behind such assaults.

Here are five notable cases that paint a grim picture of the challenges encountered by the police force.

Case 1: The Batu Pahat incident

In the early hours of Oct 16, 1980, the Batu Pahat police station in Johor was attacked by 16 members of the extremist group, Kumpulan Nur Zaman.

Clad in white robes resembling ninjas, the attackers launched a fierce attack on the station.

The confrontation resulted in a bloody clash, with eight of the assailants being shot dead.

The chaos left 23 individuals injured, including police officers, police staff, and civilians.

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This incident remains one of the most violent attacks on a police station in Malaysian history.

Case 2: The Teluk Bahang riot

A routine police operation to curb illegal motorcycle racing or 'mat rempit’ turned chaotic on March 4, 2012.

Around 100 villagers, angered by what they perceived as heavy-handed tactics—specifically, an officer allegedly throwing a helmet at a group of motorcyclists—attacked the Teluk Bahang police station.

The mob's aggressive behaviour highlighted the tension between law enforcement and local communities, especially in matters of public order and youth activities.

Case 3: The Pinggiran Subang tragedy

In 2017, an officer on duty at the Pinggiran Subang police station was brutally killed.

The assailant struck the officer on the head with a sharp weapon and then shot him in the back while he was within the police station premises.

This incident was a stark reminder of the lethal risks that police officers face, even within the supposed safety of their own stations.

Case 4: The Kuala Penyu scare

On March 16, 2022 in Kuala Penyu, Sabah, a 48-year-old local man, heavily intoxicated and armed with a machete, stormed into the police station.

The incident occurred around midnight and the man's staggering, drunken state was evident as he barely managed to stand.

When questioned by the on-duty officers, he chillingly replied, "To kill you."

The situation escalated as he attempted to swing the machete, prompting officers to retreat behind the complaints counter and secure the front door.

Fortunately, no injuries were reported and the suspect was apprehended and charged with criminal intimidation.

Case 5: The Sungai Besi attack

Late in the night on April 17, 2023, a 34-year-old man under the influence of drugs approached the Sungai Besi police station in Kuala Lumpur.

Shouting threats about throwing acid, he splashed water on an officer and aggressively forced his way into the station, even throwing a beverage can that shattered the glass wall of the guard post.

In the ensuing struggle, the man bit one of the officers, severing part of his finger.

This brutal assault highlighted the unpredictable dangers officers face, especially from individuals impaired by substances.