14 year old girl shot dead in southern Thailand

A 14 year old girl was shot dead in front of a mosque in Pattani province in southern Thailand this morning.

At 8.35am, officers at Yarang Police Station were notified of a shooting in front of Darul Nad Watul Islamiyah Mosque near Pracharak School in Moo 6, Puyook subdistrict, Mueang district.

Police rushed to the scene to find that a high school student, 14 year old Kutakwa [surname withheld], had been shot on the left side of her chest. Kutakwa was rushed to hospital where she later succumbed to her injuries.

Witnesses said that before the shooting, Kutakwa was sitting on the marble benches with her mother. The pair were waiting for Kutakwa’s father to come out of the mosque.

Then, an assailant driving a grey Toyota Sport Rider with a Pattani registration plate pulled out a gun and fired two shots, one of them fatally hitting 14 year old Kutakwa.

The witness said Kutakwa collapsed on the floor in front of her mother who embraced her child, in a pool of blood, while calling for help.

The culprit – estimated to be around 30 years old – drove away on Route 410, expected to head towards Yarang district.

Superintendent of Muang Pattani Police Station, Jeffrey Saimankul, said he sent an investigative team to the scene to collect evidence and inspect CCTV footage to track the down the assailant.

Police found CCTV footage of the assailant circling the village before the attack. Police think he was trying to target someone and missed, hitting Kutakwa instead.

Reports say that the assailant has surrendered to the police and is under interrogation. Police are trying to find out the cause behind this pointless and tragic loss of life.

In January, a 14 year old girl from Roi Et province was stabbed to death as she got off the school bus in the morning. The killer, 36 year old Preecha Wichaisorn, was released from prison three days prior to the attack after being locked away for assault.

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Leah is a translator and news writer for the Thaiger. Leah studied East Asian Religions and Thai Studies at the University of Leeds and Chiang Mai University. Leah covers crime, politics, environment, human rights, entertainment, travel and culture in Thailand and southeast Asia.