| June 14, 2011
A FMT journalist files a report against a police officer who gives him the run-around when he attempts to alert the police about a robbery.
PETALING JAYA: As a former crime desk reporter, Teoh El Sen is used to dealing with the police and has maintained that not all are bad apples. But an encounter with one of them last night has left him questioning their commitment to serving the public.
Teoh, 25, and his girlfriend were dropping off the latter’s teenage cousin at his house in Pandan Perdana, Ampang, Kuala Lumpur, last night when they walked into a burglary.
As the teenager locked himself in a room, the burglar pointed an axe at the couple who bolted onto the street.
A passing taxi stopped to let them in. As they sped off,
Teoh noticed that the burglar was pursuing them in his own car. He immediately called the Pandan Perdana beat base.
“What ensued was worse than what had just happened,” Teoh recalled. “The officer who picked up the call interrupted my report and loudly said, ‘I’m just sitting here, what can I do?’ He ordered me to call another number instead.”
“I tried to tell him that the burglar was right behind us but he cut me off again and literally shouted the other number down the phone. And then he slammed the phone down.”
Teoh, who is currently an FMT journalist, called the number which turned out to be non-existent. By the time he got hold of the correct number, the burglar had driven off.
The couple returned to the house and found that the burglar had made off with two bank books, a set of car keys and RM1,000. No one was injured.
Teoh then proceeded to the Pandan Perdana station to file a police report. The senior officer behind the desk, whose name tag read “Murni”, immediately asked if it was he who had made the earlier call.
“I asked him in return if it was he who took the call and he replied, ‘Yes, so what?’”
“I expressed my disappointment, took his picture and told him I would be filing a complaint.”
“Throughout the lodging of the police report, Murni spoke to us in a raised voice and at one point sighed, ‘Oh I’m so scared.’ He even threw a pen and paper with his identity number onto the desk and challenged us to report him.”
Another officer identified only as Assangka received Teoh’s report and admitted that Murni was “always like that”.
“As a journalist I have the means to highlight my experience,” Teoh stated. “Countless of others who have suffered the same treatment may not have had an avenue to complain. And this is why public faith in the police force has dwindled.”
Teoh, however, commended Selangor police chief, Tun Hisan Tun Hamzah, who comforted the couple, thanked them for the feedback and promised to take the appropriate action.
“I hope stern action is taken against Murni as a reminder to other officers to not engage in such apathetic behaviour.
“There is a framed motto in the police station that reads ‘Protection, Proactive and Performance and Outcome Oriented’. Last night Murni fulfilled none of the above,” Teoh added.