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Police quiet on probe into Phuket student’s death

Police quiet on probe into Phuket student’s death

PHUKET: Two weeks have passed since the death of 20-year-old student Pornpiphat “Mint” Iaddam, who collapsed while running after a cheerleading practice session at Phuket Rajabhat University on Aug 19, and police say they are still investigating the student’s death.

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By The Phuket News

Wednesday 2 September 2020, 07:32PM


Deputy national police chief Pol Maj Gen Suchart Theerasawat was in Phuket two weeks ago to give a public update on the investigation, but Phuket police have made no progress since. Photo: The Phuket News / file

Deputy national police chief Pol Maj Gen Suchart Theerasawat was in Phuket two weeks ago to give a public update on the investigation, but Phuket police have made no progress since. Photo: The Phuket News / file

They have also confirmed that no new charges have been filed.

Lt Col Chana Sutthimas of the Phuket City Police, who is leading the investigation into Nong Mint’s death, on Aug 24 said that police had already interviewed many people regarding the young student’s death.

However, he declined to answer further questions about the investigation yesterday (Sept 1), instead referring all enquiries to Phuket Provincial Commander Col Witoon Kongsudjai.

Col Witoon also remained reserved in his replies to questions from The Phuket News.

“Police are continuing their investigation,” he said.

“I can confirm that no new charges have been pressed against any persons under investigation,” he added.

So far police have announced that they have presented a charge of negligence causing the death of another person against a female senior student at the university.

The student has admitted that she ordered Nong Mint to run laps as punishment for making mistakes during the cheerleading practice, but denied the charge against her.

The student has been released on bail, Col Witoon confirmed, but he declined to answer any further questions about the student’s involvement.

QSI International School Phuket

Just days after Nong Mint’s death, deputy national police chief Pol Maj Gen Suchart Theerasawat, who flew to Phuket to be updated personally on progress in the case, publicly said that police were “thoroughly investigating” how far Nong Mint was ordered to run as punishment for making mistakes during the cheerleading practice.

The university claims that Nong Mint was ordered to run laps around the car park where the cheerleading practice was held and collapsed, and later died, after running only a few hundred metres.

However, initial news reports consistently reported that Nong Mint was ordered to run eight laps around the pond at the university, and collapsed and died after running several kilometres.

Police so far have yet to make any public statement on this simple, yet critical factor in Nong Mint’s death.

Col Witoon also declined to comment on whether the university was being investigated for any negligence in Nong Mint’s death, especially amid reports that only first-year students were ordered to run laps as penance for making mistakes during the cheerleading practice, raising the issue of whether the university was taking any proactive steps to prevent hazing on campus.

“Police are also waiting for the results of an in-depth examination of Nong Mint’s body by hospital staff. At this stage, no other people have been charged,” was all Col Witoon would say.

Asked when the investigation was expected to be completed, Col Witoon said, “Police are working on it to finish it as soon as possible.”

During his visit to Phuket on Aug 24, deputy national police chief Pol Maj Gen Suchart warned against people making any presumptions about what had caused Nong Mint’s death. 

However, he also said, “This case should take a short time to process, and if the medical results come quickly, the case can be prosecuted and closed.”

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Capricornball | 02 September 2020 - 23:38:24

Just a bunch of smug amateurs. As per usual, the arrogant position and responses of the police just lowers the public's already pathetic opinion of them, and shows the general public that they should just shut up and forget about it, that "this is Thailand", and that justice should not be expected.

 

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