18 February 2019
The man's body was found floating in the swimming pool of The Capitol at Lohas Park. Photos: HKEJ, Lohas Park
The man's body was found floating in the swimming pool of The Capitol at Lohas Park. Photos: HKEJ, Lohas Park

Retired man burdened by debt kills wife before jumping to death

A retired man, said to be heavily burdened by debt, strangled his wife before jumping to his death from their rented flat in Tseung Kwan O.

The elderly couple’s daughter returned to their home on the 30th floor of The Capitol at Lohas Park at around 40 minutes after midnight on Thursday, and found her 63-year-old mother lying unconscious in bed, Sing Tao Daily reports. She immediately called the police.

Police officers who rushed to the scene believed the victim had been strangled by a cord based on the marks on her neck. Paramedics confirmed she was dead.

Police then began to look for the husband, a 66-year-old retired engineer surnamed Wong, whose whereabouts was unknown.

As the search was going on, a security guard at the Lohas Park clubhouse told police he earlier heard a loud bang from the swimming pool, where the police later found Wong’s body floating.

Wong was rushed to Tseung Kwan O Hospital, where he was confirmed dead.

Police said Wong had apparently strangled his wife before jumping off the balcony of their flat and ending up in the pool.

The case was listed as murder and suicide.

Hui Chung-ki, acting chief inspector at the Kwun Tong Police District, said Wong had left a note, in which he said he wanted to kill himself as he owed a lot of money, Ming Pao Daily reported.

Wong also said in the note he did not want to see his wife being hounded by debt collectors after he died, and so he decided to end her life as well, the newspaper said.

Police said they were still trying to determine why he had become heavily indebted, noting that he was not known to have any vices.

Yung Lai-ping, director of Debt Counseling and Financial Capability Service at the Caritas Family Crisis Support Center, said some people who owe a lot of debt think that killing themselves and even family members could resolve their problems once and for all.

She urged heavily indebted people to seek help from professional institutions as soon as possible rather than try to keep it a secret in order to save face.

EJ Insight supports efforts to help people deal with depression and related issues. Here is the 24-hour multilingual suicide prevention hotline of The Samaritans: +852 2896 0000 (or email [email protected]).

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