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Crime and Tragedy

Sath Kok Sreng and Chheang Chamnan / Khmer Times Share:

Death by DIY
BANTEAY MEANCHEY – Deputy provincial police commissioner Cheng Chout was killed after electrocuting himself while attempting do-it-yourself repairs at his home near Mongkol Borey market last week.

Witnesses say the 58-year-old climbed to the roof to inspect an air-conditioning unit that had ceased to function earlier in the afternoon. 

Despite his lack of experience in electrical repairs and knowledge of safety precautions, he tried to check the electrical connections while they were “hot.” 

Mr. Chout apparently disconnected the electric lead to the unit without opening the circuit breaker and then tried to insulate or repair a live wire. He must have touched a blank end. Being earthed, he suffered an electric shock which killed him.

His family went to look for him in the early evening because he was late for dinner. They saw him lying lifeless on the roof and called the police, who confirmed his death by accident and released the body for burial. 

Mr. Chout leaves behind his wife, a daughter, and four sons. 

Two Dead, One Injured in Mongkol Borey
BANTEAY MEANCHEY – The close of the Khmer New Year week ended badly for three residents in Mongkol Borey district after two were killed and another badly injured. 

The first incident involved a 34-year-old self-taught handyman who fell to his death after trying to fix a balcony in Tasol village. Police have not released his name. 

In a second mishap, a young boy was killed and another was seriously injured when a tower of loudspeakers fell on them at a village dance in Ta Lom commune. 

The boys were injured when Mec Mol, a 21-year-old local man, knocked over the stack of speakers when he pulled a trailer out from behind them with his motor tiller. The loudspeakers fell on the boys. Mr. Mol ran away upon seeing this. 

Col. Cy Dy of the district police is investigating whether the speakers were set up on an unstable base. Officers are also looking for the fugitive tiller driver.  

Unloved Son Commits Suicide
KAMPONG CHAM – A 22-year-old man in Brasam village committed suicide this week by drinking picric acid, a weak, vinegar-like compound that is toxic, corrosive and explosive.

Kampong Siem district police chief, Pak Cheat, said Oeur Sambo had told his mother that morning that he did not want to live anymore because she loved him less than his brothers and sisters. 

He drank the acid he had bought from the market the same afternoon. His family, however, caught him in the act and rushed him to the hospital. 

But the unfortunate young man was pronounced dead on arrival. His family only notified police after bringing the body home. The forensic examination confirmed death by suicide. 

Jailhouse Houdini
BATTAMBANG – A man accused of having sex with an 11-year-old girl in Somrong Knong commune has escaped from the police station despite being in handcuffs and leg irons. 

Kart Ponlork, 25, from Phnom Penh, apparently met the girl on social media and sweet-talked her into meeting him. He later went to her hometown in Battambang to visit her. The rendezvous culminated in intercourse.

The girl’s parents got wind of this, reported the affair to the police, and demanded a $10,000 “bride-price”. Mr. Ponlork was taken to the police station for questioning. 

His brother, who was unable to pay the victim the full sum was negotiating with police when Mr. Ponlork took the opportunity to go to the toilet. He made a dash for it despite being shackled on hands and feet. 

The accused is still at large.  

Father Rapes His Daughter
KAMPONG SPEU – A 48-year-old father was arrested last week in Srey Sampong village for allegedly sexually assaulting his 20-year-old daughter during Khmer New Year.

Police say the girl’s mother left her at home alone with her father, Long Seng, a normal occurrence. This time, however, he used the opportunity to enter his daughter’s room and coerced her to have sex with him. The girl did not physically resist. But later, she told her mother about the incident.  

The girl’s mother then pressed charges at the Samrong Torng district police station against her husband. Police from the district, with the help of local police forces, rushed to Mr. Seng’s house and took him in for questioning.  

Mr. Seng is currently awaiting legal action by the prosecuting court. 

Wife Arrested for Acid Attack on Husband
KAMPONG SPEU – A 52-year-old enraged and jealous housewife who poured battery acid on her husband’s face while he was sleeping was arrested Saturday night in Chak Kambet village. 

District police chief, Khut Sophal, reported that En Sophal confessed to the attack because her spouse, Pech Chantha, 52, never helped with housework or earned any money. She claimed he spent his time drinking with his friends and also suspected him of having an affair with another woman from the village.  

After being attacked, Mr. Chantha shouted for help, resulting in his sons and daughters stepping in to stop their mother’s attack from escalating. They took him to the provincial hospital for emergency treatment and then alerted the police. 

Mr. Chantha’s eyesight was saved. He is recovering, thanks to timely and intensive care by doctors. 

No-Visa Foreigners Nabbed in Sihanoukville
SIHANOUKVILLE – Police and immigration officers on the lookout for foreigners with expired visas arrested two men Monday and sent them to the National Immigration Department in Phnom Penh.

Those nabbed were:

Italian Montanari Oliver, 40, who worked as a cook on Koh Rong Island. His visa expired three years ago.

William Barron, 32, a US citizen with no visa, who lived in a guesthouse in Village 4.

“Mr. Oliver and Mr. Barron are at the Phnom Penh immigration center,” Major Gen. Uk Hiasela from immigration enforcement said. “We are preparing the paperwork to send them back to their home countries.” 

Another immigration officer said they would continue to search and penalize foreigners whose visas have expired.

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