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Gun firing Phuket policeman treated for mental health issues at psychiatric hospital

PHUKET: L/Cpl Ruangrit Jaritgam of the Phuket City Police, who was charged on multiple counts after he fired his gun at a petrol station injuring another man late last month, is currently being treated for mental health issues in Suansaranrom Psychiatric Hospital in Surat Thani, Deputy Chief of the Thalang Police Lt Col Anukul Nuket has confirmed.

crime, health, police,

Shela Riva

Wednesday 15 November 2017, 01:50PM

Police attend the scene of the incident on October 27. Photo: Thalang Police
Police attend the scene of the incident on October 27. Photo: Thalang Police

Speaking to The Phuket News today (Nov 15), Lt Col Anukul said, L/Cpl Ruangrit was on his way to be treated for mental health issues on the day of the incident. He paid B50,000 bail for the charges against him and then continued on his way to be treated in Surat Thani with his mother.”

Lcpl Ruangrit was charged for attempted murder using firearms; carrying firearms in a public place without a permit and firing a gun in a public place without a permit. (See story here).

The unnamed man who was shot was just a passerby, explained Col Anukul.

He was just a driver stopping for petrol, he was walking by when the incident occurred. The injured man is out of the hospital now, he is able to walk fine,” said Col Anukul.

“L/Cpl Ruangrit shot the gun due to the stress he was suffering because he was going to be admitted into a psychiatric hospital. From what we know, there was no argument, he was just stressed,” he said.

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“He has had a history of mental issues and drug problems,” he added.

“I cannot say whether or not he deliberately wanted to hurt anyone. How can I know? But he had the gun in his hand, he could have shot and killed people if he wanted to, but he didn’t.

“The investigation is still ongoing. The suspect’s diagnosis from the Suansaranrom Psychiatric Hospital will form part of the evidence in the case, so it will be a while before the investigation is closed, possibly a few months,” he added.

If you or anyone you know is in need of mental health services, please contact the Samaritans of Thailand at their 24-hour hotline 02-713-6791 (English), 02713-6793 (Thai) or Thai Mental Health Hotline at 1323 (Thai).



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Jor12 | 17 November 2017 - 22:28:17

Wrong... doctors and nurse have more powerful yet silent weapons than guns, as do soldiers. The weapon used in this case was not used "with impunity" but a one off situation. 

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Pauly44 | 16 November 2017 - 10:41:45

Maybe, but they don't have guns and the power to use them with impunity which is the point, especially in Thailand where it seems the police are above the law, where I'm from police officers are regularly screened for both, your comment is mixing apples with oranges.

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Jor12 | 15 November 2017 - 21:15:08

Having mental health or drug issues can be found in any occupation. If anyone has a clue about such issues would want to see the person treated to become a worthy member of society not pilloried by clowns in PN. Engaged in stressful occupations such as doctors, nurses and army personnet have high incidents of stress related incidents such as PTS.

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Kurt | 15 November 2017 - 15:18:48

Well, see??? A police officer with a history of mental issues and drug problems.
And that is allowed to work as a police officer?
Perhaps a few month in that mental hospital until al is forgotten, and than back on the road in uniform + gun.

Also that deputy police chief who said: .."He could have shot and killed people if he wanted too, but he didn't"..needs a mental check up. S...

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