ALOR STAR: Nine journalists from various media organisations were shocked when a group of hospital security guards assaulted them while they were taking photographs and recording videos near the forensic unit of the Sultanah Bahiyah Hospital here.

Eric Tan Guan Cheong, a stringer with The Star newspaper was even allegedly grabbed by the throat by a guard before other journalists intervened.

The incident began at around 1am on Saturday when the journalists converged on the forensic unit to cover a case of a boy who had died after he got entangled in a curtain cord while playing at a house in Jitra.

A distraught family member was upset that the media was present and warned them to stop recording or taking photographs.

The media members relented but later, the security guards began to provoke them and this resulted in an exchange of words.

Tan said that he was recording the incident on his smartphone as evidence when one of the guards pounced on him and grabbed his throat.

“I felt discomfort and was pushing away the grip which was getting tighter.”

The quick intervention by other journalists prevented the situation from getting out of hand, said Tan, a former Special Branch police officer.

He later accompanied fellow journalists to the police station to lodge a report.

He also underwent a check up at the hospital as a precaution.

Tan said he was informed that the hospital authorities had apologised to the journalists over the incident.