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Police in China’s Sichuan province are hunting for a decorated police officer who killed three people and injured two others in a Tuesday afternoon shooting rampage.

The authoritarian Chinese Communist government has some of the strictest gun control laws in the world. The suspect, identified in Chinese media as Li Qiang, is a 36-year-old police officer who was decorated for his bravery in 2021 after he saved two people from drowning. It is possible he used his service weapon to carry out the shooting.

The Chinese government appears to be deleting online information about Li Qiang and obfuscating if he was an active-duty officer at the time of the shooting. Agency France-Presse (AFP) reported on Thursday that it was able to confirm Li’s name, age, and commendation for bravery before the notice of his decoration was deleted by the city of Leshan’s public security bureau. The deleted article said Li joined the police force in 2012.

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County officials said they were “unaware” of Li’s duty status.

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