Mohamad Shukri Kassim, 17, was fatally beaten at a rehabilitation center in Pokok Sena, Kedah, in Malaysia after a fight over fried chicken erupted among a group of inmates on November 18.
Kassim, who was originally from Langkawi, was found dead by a warden after the 17-year-old did not attend morning prayers the following day.
“The warden said that the deceased did not wake up for subuh prayers. We initially thought it was a normal death,” Kota Setar OCPD Asst Comm Mohd Rozi Jidin told local media.
It is believed that the boy had been dead for at least three hours before his body was found.
Police were notified of the death at 5:30 in the morning on Saturday before Kassim’s body was transported to Hospital Sultanah Bahiyah for an autopsy, according to ACP Mohd Rozi.
An early investigation into the attack revealed that a scuffle broke out between the victim and 10 other inmates, aged between 14-18, over fried chicken the previous night.
“Police had thought that it was a case of sudden death but post mortem results revealed injuries believed to be caused by punches,” ACP Mohd Rozi was quoted as saying, adding that the group of inmates have been remanded for a week to help with investigations.
Kassim checked in to the rehab center on November 11 after being under detention for stealing something in Pulau Langkawi.
According to World of Buzz, the unfortunate incident has sparked outrage online, with one Internet user pointing out that the rehab center did not help in improving the behavior of the teenage boys.
“It is called a rehab center, yet these kids are still like this,” the user said. “What are they teaching in there? Do children really learn to become better?”
Another person talked about her brother’s experience in rehab.
“They have gangs in there. The old ones will take advantage of the new ones. They will snatch your food and if you do not give them, you’ll be beaten up,” she said.