THE debate on the dangers of the new police holster could be re-opened after a senior police inspector had his gun snatched as he was checking a suspected illegal immigrant yesterday. The man stole the officer's revolver from his hip holster during a struggle after an ID check in Nam On Street, Shau Kei Wan. He then pointed the Smith and Wesson .38 at the officer, but did not open fire. The officer shouted at the man to drop the gun, which he did as he ran towards Shau Kei Wan Road. The gun was recovered, but the man escaped. The officer, who was slightly injured in the struggle, was treated in hospital and discharged. Concern about the police holsters used since January 1993 surfaced last year when a high number of snatches were reported. The new holsters have no cover flap, unlike the one they replaced. From January to September last year, six snatches were reported compared to just one in 1992 and two the following year. Last year, two high profile cases highlighted the dangers of the holster, introduced for a quicker draw. One gun snatched in March led to a 35-shot shootout with a car thief who hit a constable in the waist in Shamshuipo. In October, a taxi driver and a Koreanbusinessman were killed in Aberdeen after a gunman snatched a service revolver from an officer in Central.