Knifeman, 77, arrested after holding wife hostage

PUBLISHED : Friday, 08 August, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 08 August, 2003, 12:00am

An elderly man who allegedly stabbed his wife was arrested after a three-hour hostage drama in his Shamshuipo flat yesterday.

The man, 77, who was reportedly discharged from a mental institution on Wednesday, was disarmed and arrested by police after firemen cut through a chain which he used to lock the gate to his Hau Chi House flat in Li Cheng Uk Estate.

His wife, Law Ng-mui, 76, was rescued and sent to Caritas Medical Centre where she remained in critical condition last night. Police forced their way inside the flat after negotiators spent three hours unsuccessfully trying to persuade the man to unlock the gate.

Gas company employees disconnected the pipeline to the flat after the man threatened to set it alight.

A 40cm knife was seized from the flat. Mrs Law suffered wounds to her abdomen, hands and legs.

Neighbours said the elderly couple has two daughters living in the United States and that the husband had developed a mental illness after his mother died nine years ago and had been under treatment since.

The neighbours said they heard the couple arguing at about 7.30am and later saw the husband chain his flat's front gate.

He was later seen brandishing a knife.

The man was admitted to Kwai Chung Hospital. He has not been charged.