Police hold jaywalker after attack on warden

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 14 June, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 14 June, 2005, 12:00am

A traffic warden was allegedly assaulted after he chased down a jaywalker in Tsuen Wan yesterday.

The suspect, 45, was spotted walking past several red lights at a zebra crossing near a bridge in Tai Ho Road.

The intersection is a traffic offence black spot. Police have stepped up enforcement, using traffic wardens to issue warnings and fixed-penalty tickets to offenders.

In the incident, a 53-year-old warden and his colleague had merely intended to issue a warning to the suspect but he ran off. They gave chase and were joined by several nearby police officers.

When the man reached Tsuen Hing Path, he lost his temper and allegedly picked up a chair from a snack shop to throw at his pursuers.

The warden was allegedly hit on the head with a metal-framed plastic chair, which shattered on impact.

The other officers subdued the suspect and the injured warden was taken semi-conscious to Yan Chai Hospital, suffering injuries to his head, knees and hands.

He was later transferred to Princess Margaret Hospital where he was listed in a stable condition last night.

Police are treating the case as wounding. Witnesses told police the middle-aged suspect might be homeless. He was detained overnight.

Hung Cheung-yan, chairman of the Hong Kong Traffic Warden Union, said the attack was an isolated case and did not mean it was dangerous to work as a traffic warden.

While admitting the incident highlighted safety issues, he stressed the problem was not serious.

However, he said the union would discuss possible safety measures to better protect traffic wardens.

'We will talk about the possibility of [additional] safety measures and what the measures will be.'