At least ten killed after soldier opens fire in northeastern Thailand; suspect takes cover inside shopping mall

A police officer contacted by phone in the city of Nakhon Ratchasima in northeastern Thailand said the soldier initially shot dead another soldier and a woman and wounded a third person, apparently over a land dispute.

The Associated Press February 08, 2020 20:22:14 IST
At least ten killed after soldier opens fire in northeastern Thailand; suspect takes cover inside shopping mall
  • Police in northeastern Thailand said a soldier shot multiple people on Saturday, killing more than 10, and was holed up at a popular shopping mall

  • A police officer contacted by phone in the city of Nakhon Ratchasima said the soldier initially shot dead another soldier and a woman and wounded a third person, apparently over a land dispute.

  • The mall was shut down and the street outside was closed while the authorities tried to arrest the gunman and rescue shoppers inside

Bangkok: Police in northeastern Thailand said a soldier shot multiple people on Saturday, killing more than 10, and was holed up at a popular shopping mall. Royal Thai Police spokesman Krissana Pattanacharoen said more than 10 people had been killed. The total number of wounded was not immediately known.

At least ten killed after soldier opens fire in northeastern Thailand suspect takes cover inside shopping mall

Representational image. Reuters

The newspaper Thai Rath said the incident began at about 3.30 p.m. It appeared to be unresolved five hours later.

A police officer contacted by phone in the city of Nakhon Ratchasima said the soldier initially shot dead another soldier and a woman and wounded a third person, apparently over a land dispute.

City and neighborhood police officers, who asked not to be identified because they were not authorized to release information, said the man took a gun from his base and drove to the Terminal 21 mall, shooting along the way. Several Thai media reported that he traveled in a military vehicle. Nakhon Ratchasima is also known as Korat.

Video taken outside the mall and shared on social media showed people taking cover in a parking lot as gunshots were fired. The mall was shut down and the street outside was closed while the authorities tried to arrest the gunman and rescue shoppers inside.

Defense Ministry spokesman Lt. Gen. Kongcheep Tantrawanich identified the suspect as Sgt. Jakrapanth Thomma. He said police and military units had locked down the mall and the surrounding area.

The incident came just a month after another high-profile mall shooting, in the central Thai city of Lopburi. In that case, a masked gunman carrying a handgun with a silencer killed three people, including a 2-year-old boy, and wounded four others as he robbed a jewelry store. A suspect, a school director, was arrested less than two weeks later and reportedly confessed, saying he did not mean to shoot anyone.

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