According to the initial incident report filed by Maj Techin Deethongon of the Karon Police, who responded to the incident, “We received notice at 4am on Aug 21 that there were tourists fighting at the Centara Grand Resort. Karon Police went to the scene.
“There we found Mr Roger Bullman, 53 years old, with a cut wound from a sharp object on his left shoulder and he had bruises on the left side of his face.
“British national Amitpal Singh Bajaj, 34, was lying face down in front of his room,” Maj Techin noted.
“His nose and mouth were bleeding. His breathing was weak. He was taken to Patong Hospital directly.
“Then he passed away. Next police and doctors united to find the cause of death,” Maj Techin noted in his report.
Karon Chief Police Col Prawit, initially very reluctant to release any details of the case, explained to The Phuket News that the incident occurred at about 3:30am early Wednesday morning.
Mr Bullman, and Mr Bajaj, were staying in adjacent rooms at the resort.
Mr Bullman was staying in his room with his wife, and Mr Bajaj was staying in his room with his wife and young son, he said.
“Mr Bajaj confronted Mr Bullman for making too much noise because his wife and child wanted to sleep,” Col Prawit said, referring to the statements to police from both Mr Bullman and Mr Bajaj’s wife.
“They started arguing, and Mr Bullman broke the door on the balcony joining the two rooms and entered Mr Bajaj’s room. The two started fighting. Both were fighting inside the room, and (at least one) bottle was used in the fight.
“The fight continued outside the room. Mr Bullman was bigger and stronger, and had Mr Bajaj in a hold with his arm across his neck.
“Mr Bullman choked and hit Mr Bajaj until he was unconscious. A security guard arrived at the scene and saw Mr Bullman on top of Mr Bajaj while choking him with his arm.
“The security guard shouted at Mr Bullman to stop, which he did immediately,” he added.
“Mr Bajaj’s breathing was weak. The security guard called the police and rescue workers, who took Mr Bajaj to Patong Hospital immediately, but Patong Hospital doctors later informed police that Mr Bajaj had passed away from asphyxiation.
“Next, forensic police and police officers are to conduct their investigation,” Col Prawit said.
Maj Techin, the police officer who responded to the incident, told The Phuket News, “The Norwegian suspect admitted that he was arguing (with Mr Bajaj) and then he went into victim’s room through the wood door on the balcony.
“The suspect did admit he had the victim in a choke hold. The Norwegian man told me that he just wanted to stop the victim, but he used too much strength,” he said.
Maj Techin also noted, “The victim’s wife told me that her husband and the Norwegian suspect were arguing, and then the Norwegian suspect came into the victim’s room. Then they started (physically) fighting each other. Her husband told her to carry their child out of the room to find help at reception.”
Maj Techin declined to give any further details from the police reports, saying, “That is enough for the public.”
However, Maj Techin did confirm that there was no hotel security CCTV coverage of where the incident took place, but did confirm that hotel security CCTV coverage showed Mr Bajaj’s wife arriving at the reception desk to raise the alarm.
Maj Techin declined to answer what had caused the sharp cut on Mr Bullman’s shoulder as confirmed in his own report after arriving at the scene.
Karon Chief Police Col Prawit said, “I don’t want to reveal that in public.”
Asked to confirm whether Mr Bullman had been released on bail, as confirmed by Maj Ekkachai Siri of the Phuket Tourist Police yesterday in his explanation of the incident (see story here), Col Prawit said, “I don’t know where he is now after I handed him over to the holding cells at Phuket Provincial Court.
“We sent our request to the court for Mr Bullman be denied release on bail,” he said, but added, “We are holding his passport while the legal process continues. He will come when I need him to appear.”
Maj Ekkachai yesterday told The Phuket News that Mr Bullman had been released on bail posted at the court, but was unable to confirm how much bail was posted at.
Reports in the Norwegian media said that bail was posted at about B200,000.
Maj Techin confirmed that Mr Bullman has been charged with trespass by an act of violence, which if he is found guilty of will incur a sentence of up to five years in jail or a fine of up to B10,000, or both.
Maj Techin also confirmed that Mr Bullman has also been charged with manslaughter, defined under the Thai Criminal Code as causing the death of a person by inflicting injury upon the body of such person without intent to cause death.
If found guilty of manslaughter, Mr Bullman will face a punishment of three to 15 years imprisonment.
In compiling this story The Phuket News has received several threatening emails and phone calls. All information regarding these threats have been passed on to the police.