SHAH ALAM — March 22, 2019: A Kuala Lumpur Hospital forensic expert today confirmed that the injury pattern on the body of firefighter Muhammad Adib Mohd. Kassim was not consistent with those of someone who had been hit, kicked or punched.
Dr. Ahmad Hafizam Hasmi of the Forensic Medical Department, told the inquest that the post-mortem on Adib found that the injuries to the thorax were not something one would normally see in the case of someone being hit by a blunt object or kicked or punched.
He was of the view that the injury pattern did not match that of a beating. In addition, there were no injuries on the face, head, abdomen as well as upper and lower limbs that would match injuries from being hit or defending oneself.
“Based on the pattern of the internal and external injuries on the deceased, my team and I were asked to attend and help out in the reconstruction of the incident by the police on December 22,” said Hafizam.
According to the doctor, he was told by the investigating officer that a witness, Emergency Medical Rescue Service (EMRS) vehicle driver Shahril Othman, had said that Adib, who was supposed to be in the front passenger seat, was not in the van after a Fire Rescue Tender (FRT) vehicle suddenly reversed into the EMRS van during rioting at the Seafield Sri Maha Mariamman Temple on November 27.
“Based on the information, I am of the opinion that the most likely possibility that could have occurred that day was that if Adib was actually outside the van, he would have been standing with his back towards the fire truck,” he said in reply to prosecutor Hamdan Hamzah who is conducting the inquest into the cause of Adib’s death.
“The left side of the deceased took the brunt of the impact of the crash from the edge of the left door frame of the EMRS van which was open and the reversing vehicle, thus resulting in the breaking of his left ribs one to seven… the edge of the EMRS van’s left front door, which is hard, thin and straight is suitable to causing such a break, which is like a straight upright line to rib bones one to seven,” explained the doctor.
There were also horizontal scratch wounds on Adib’s back, probably due to friction against the left front side key structure plate of the van.
Elaborating further, Hafizam said the impact from the edge of the van’s front left door could have forced Adib to lunge forward and fall, with his right ribs hitting a hard and protruding surface such as a road shoulder or any hard structure and subsequently cause injury to his right thorax.
“There were scratch marks on the back of the right lower arm, back of the left elbow and on the right knee matching the friction injury one suffers from falling on a hard surface.
“The impact on the deceased’s right chest was strong due to the combination of the force from the van on his back and the momentum of the deceased body when getting out of the EMRS.” he said.
But based on the autopsy report, Hafizam could not determine if Adib got out of the van voluntarily or was pulled out by others.
Hearing before coroner Rofiah Mohamad continues on Tuesday.