Police in Papua New Guinea say two of their officers were wounded in a shoot-out which left an escaped murderer dead last Friday night.
They say ballistic tests should establish whether convicted murderer Samuel Manda was shot dead by police or one of his accomplices.
The Highlands police chief Simon Kauba says the shootout occurred after police were called to an attack on a security guard in Mt Hagen.
The assistant police commissioner says Manda and about eight others had slashed the guard with a bush knife and dragged him to a nearby drain.
"As soon as police arrived at the scene they were being shot at and there was exchange of fire, which resulted in two of my policemen being seriously wounded. One received a facial injury and I think at the moment is in critical condition at Mt Hagen General Hospital. The other policeman received minor injuries, treated and discharged a few hours later."
Simon Kauba says police are investigating the shootings, and the subsequent burning of properties by police as they searched for the other suspects.