GEORGE TOWN - The policeman caught on video roughing up two foreigners by the roadside outside a clinic in Bayan Baru here was "emotional" because the men had tried to run away despite being ordered to stop, the Balik Pulau deputy OCPD said.
Deputy Supt Lai Fah Hin said the police constable had to chase after the men before they gave up after turning into a dead end.
"When they walked out of the dead end and stopped outside the clinic, it was then that the policeman became agitated and started to slap them," he added.
The video clip of the policeman roughing up the two men has gone viral on Facebook and YouTube.
In the 65-second clip, the policeman could be seen slamming his helmet onto the ground soon after he got off from his motorcycle. He then yelled at the two foreigners who could be seen walking away while a third man squatted by the roadside.
The policeman was also seen slapping the two men, labelling them as samseng (gangsters) and kurang ajar (insolent).
DSP Lai said the men were among six people who had been flagged down for a police inspection at about 11.50am on Friday - all of whom then tried to run away. The others managed to escape.
The constable has since been transferred to a desk job pending investigations.
On Monday, Penang police chief Senior Deputy Comm Datuk Abdul Rahim Hanafi said the state police contingent's disciplinary department had launched a probe into the incident.
He also said he would not compromise on any wrongdoing committed by his men which could tarnish the image of the force.