IPOH: A coroner presiding over an inquest into the death of a Navy cadet officer chided a witness for lodging an inaccurate police report.
Sessions Court judge Azman Abu Hassan, who sat as a coroner, told Lumut Armed Forces Hospital medical assistant Mohd Fazil Mansor that if he was not the person who received the cadet when he first came to the hospital and his body after his death, Fazil should not have stated as such in his report.
“Make sure your report states exactly about what happened, who received the body and so forth, and not lodge a report based on common practice, ” he said yesterday.
“Next time if ever you need to lodge a report, make sure it is done properly and correctly.”
Fazil was testifying in the inquest on the death of J. Soosaimanicckam who died while undergoing training as a cadet officer at the naval base on May 19 last year.
He was pronounced dead that same day at the hospital.
Before his death, he complained of chest pain and shortness of breath after completing a physical exercise that was part of his daily routine training.
Soosaimanicckam had reported for duty on May 12, a week before his death.
Initial police investigations ruled out foul play as a post-mortem examination found he died of pulmonary oedema, a condition where there is water or liquid in the lungs.
Earlier, Fazil was questioned by counsel Mahajoth Singh, representing the deceased’s family as part of Lawyers For Liberty, who asked him why the police report stated that he had received the body, when in fact he had not.
According to Fazil, he had gathered the information on what transpired that day from other staff, as well as from the standard procedures in emergency cases.
He also said that someone brought Soosaimanicckam to the hospital, and two of the hospital staff placed him on a stretcher and wheeled him into the emergency department.Medical officer Mejar Dr Harvind Singh, who treated Soosaimanicckam, later pronounced him dead, and his body was brought out of the department to another room by the hospital staff, he said.
Mahajoth then asked if he (Fazil) was present when the doctor performed CPR because it was stated in the police report that CPR was performed, to which he replied no.
Fazil explained that it was standard practice for the doctor to perform CPR in critical cases, hence he stated in the police report that CPR was done although he was not present when it happened.
He also said that after the cadet’s death, Dr Harvind called the Manjung police district headquarters informing them of the case and the need for a post-mortem to be carried out on the request of the family.
“The police informed him that a representative was required to come to the station to lodge a report first, and I was asked to go on behalf of the hospital, ” he added.
To another question by the lawyer, Fazil said he saw the body and he described the clothes worn by the deceased but he could not remember if he saw any blood on the deceased or on the bed.
The inquest was first heard on Sept 24 when Manjung Hospital’s medical officer Dr S. Saravanan, who performed the post-mortem, testified.
Dr Saravanan’s testimony was supposed to continue yesterday but he was on medical leave.
He is expected to testify today.
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