An AIDS-infected inmate fatally slit the throat of a fellow prisoner and barricaded himself in a clinic over a spat at a hospital in the north-central province of Nghe An on Sunday.
Police said that 33-year-old Phan Cong Trong, who is serving a life sentence for smuggling drugs, killed 57-year-old Phan Duc Long over a minor row, news website VietNamNet reported.
The incident unfolded at around 2 p.m Sunday at Nghe An General Hospital where Trong, Long and 22-year-old Nguyen Trong Khanh were being. treated at a section used exclusively by prisoners.
Senior Lieutenant Colonel Nguyen Canh Chanh of the Nghe An Police Department said Trong attacked his two cell mates over a personal matter.
Trong reportedly bit Khanh who managed to convince a guard to unlock the door and let him run out of the room just as his attacker stabbed Long repeatedly in the throat, Chanh added.
About a dozen of police officers were immediately dispatched to the site, where Trong barricaded himself in the clinic and challenged the police to break in.
Police made several attempts to persuade Trong to surrender, including letting him call his mother, to no avail.
“He is cunning and assumed that the police were hoping to shoot him down,” Chanh said. “He calmed down a little after the officers promised not to shoot.”
Following police instructions, Trong checked Long's pulse and confirmed he was dead. Soon afterward, Trong agreed to use a pair of handcuffs tossed into the room to lock himself to a set of bars on the window.
“He was totally calm and said ‘I gave up for you’ when I approached,” Chanh said.
“There were blood stains on his face and clothes which he said belonged to his victim,” he added.
Trong told police he attacked his fellow inmates because they were both "tough".
Police took Trong to the station at around 7 p.m. on the same day, after conducting a preliminary investigation and cordoning off the crime scene, news site VnExpress reported.
Nguyen Danh Linh, director of Nghe An General Hospital, said the section for treating prisoners is isolated from the rest of the hospital by fences managed by the police.