False: Police commander did not admit to sexual assaults
[Note: Coincidentally, this claim has also been debunked by Facebook page 求驗傳媒 but Annie Lab investigated the matter independently]
An image of Monday’s press conference by the police with what appears to be quotes from a regional commander admitting to sexual violence by officers was posted on Facebook and shared more than a few thousand times before it was removed.
“Police working in the frontlines are young and depressed from enforcing laws, it is understandable that they might be impulsive and couldn’t control themselves,” said the text, in Chinese.
“As women rioters did not fully reject (the sexual assaults), there is nothing wrong to consider this as their compensation for the damage of society.”
The claim is false. The regional commander of Kowloon West, Cheuk Hau-Yin, did not discuss anything related to sexual assault in the archived full-length press conference video available on the Hong Kong Police Force’s official Facebook page.
The record of all press conferences indicates that Monday was the only occasion Cheuk talked to the media in a press conference since the civil unrest started in June, suggesting that the quote could not have been taken from earlier comments.
The image in question seems to have been taken from Sing Tao Daily.
A Chinese University of Hong Kong student shared her experience of sexual assault at Kwai Chung Police Station two weeks ago. Since then more alleged victims have come forward. The police have been adamant in denying any wrongdoing or sexual assault.