Police officials acknowledge that tear gas had been used to disperse protesters near the auto park, but say there was only a small amount of gas in the air when emergency responders found Chow.
Police did not rule out the possibility he was fleeing from tear gas but noted officials fired from a distance. You can sign up to receive it directly here.
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Chow's death is expected to spark fresh protests and fuel anger and resentment against the police, who are already under huge pressure amid accusations of excessive force as the city grapples with its worst political crisis in decades.
"Considering it's the first death that's happened at a police-people confrontation scene, it will certainly add fuel to the already strong fire of anger - particularly when people generally have absolutely no trust in the system, and the police", said Alvin Yeung, a pro-democracy lawmaker.
The movement has since expanded to include other demands, including direct elections for the city's leaders and an independent investigation into alleged police brutality. Police also denied claims that officers pushed the victim down and had delayed emergency services. University President Wei Shyy briefly paused the school's graduation ceremony to announce Chow's death and observe a moment of silence. "I think the whole of Hong Kong is very disappointed in the police, and does not have any expectation towards them", Lai says.More news: UFC's Walt Harris Stepdaughter Kidnapping Suspect ID'd, Arrest Warrant Issued
Fellow students had been holding a vigil round the clock for Chow as doctors battled to save his life.
The Hong Kong government said in a statement it expressed "great sorrow and regret" over the student's death, and extended sympathies to his family.
Chow, 22, was a second year computer science undergraduate at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, according to the South China Morning Post newspaper, which reported the death earlier Friday.More news: Woman fired over access to leaked tape of ABC's Amy Robach
The root of the outrage of many protesters is what they see as the Chinese interference with Hong Kong's promised freedoms. Last month, police shot two teens with live bullets in separate incidents but both recovered.
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