Argentine police probed after youths killed in chase

Seen here is the wreckage of a car in which four people were killed following a police pursuit in San Miguel del Monte, Argentina -- 12 police officers have been suspended over the incident (AFP Photo/STR)

Buenos Aires (AFP) - A dozen Argentine police officers have been suspended pending a probe into the deaths of four young people during a chase in which shots were fired into their car, officials said Thursday.

"There were shots and it was a bad procedure," Cristian Ritondo, security secretary for Buenos Aires province, told a news conference after the 12, including senior officers, were suspended from duty.

The incident happened Monday when a car full of young people failed to stop on police orders in the small rural town of San Miguel del Monte, about an hour's drive south of Buenos Aires.

Police pursued the car and then fired several shots into it from close range, after which it crashed into a parked truck.

The chase was captured on security cameras, which showed an officer leaning out the window of the patrol car and pointing into the youths' vehicle, just before the crash.

Four people -- the driver, 22, a 14-year-old youth and two girls aged 13 and 14 -- were killed. The only survivor, a 13-year-old girl, is in serious condition in hospital.

"In principle, the police officers fired shots," prosecutor Hector Vogliolo said. "A bullet was found in the body of one of the girls."

"Not respecting a summons to stop in no way justifies the use of weapons," the prosecutor said.

The mother of one of the victims, 14-year-old Gonzalo Dominguez, told local media: "It was a massacre. Those children, how could they chase them by shooting at them?"

"They were happy in that car, all friends," said Susan Dominguez, adding that the group of friends had posted a video on social media shortly before the deadly incident.