A low-ranking police officer shot dead a worker at a roadside tea stall in Rehab City, New Cairo, on Tuesday. Two other workers were injured by the policeman in the same incident.
Assistant Interior Minister for information and public relations Abu Abdel Karim told Al-Masry Al-Youm that the officer has been referred to the public prosecution for interrogation.
According to initial investigations, the officer (deployed to ensure the security of a judge on business in Rehab City) refused to pay for a cup of tea and a packet of cigarettes the worker had served him, leading to a quarrel. This escalated into a fight involving other workers in the near vicinity.
Judicial sources said Tuesday that during the fight the officer opened fire on the workers using an automatic rifle, killing one man and injuring two others. The offending policemen fled the scene of the incident, and the injured victims were transferred to hospital.
According to a Reuters report, the incident gave rise to a riot among angered witnesses, who overturned the officer's police car and beat up another policeman at the scene. A video captured by an eyewitness recorded people shouting, "The Interior Ministry are thugs", while others attempted to detain the by standing police officer until legal measures were taken regarding the incident.
Al-Masry Al-Youm added that medical sources reported one of the victims remains in a critical condition, having received a bullet to his abdomen. The second was shot in the hand and has been transferred to the Air Force Hospital in New Cairo, added the sources.
The incident is the latest in a series of alleged police attacks and confrontations between citizens and police officers.
Similar incidents have occurred over the past few months, in which low-ranking police officers have killed or assaulted citizens in fights with use of their firearms.
In January, a string of claims that police officers had abused doctors in hospitals sparked calls from the Doctors' Syndicate for police to be brought into line.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm