Kamala residents seek suspension of troubled cop

KAMALA: About 30 local residents this morning met Kamala Police Deputy Superintendent Lt Col Winai Kongkeaw to demand that one of his officers be removed from active duty because his behavior was “dangerous”.

At 11 am, the residents, including Phuket Provincial Administration Organization (OrBorJor) representative Sontaya Soontarak and other elected officials, explained to Col Winai that a police lieutenant under his command had been exhibiting strange and sometimes dangerous behavior following brain surgery some seven months ago, after he was involved in a car accident.

After the one-hour meeting, K. Sontaya told the media that villagers felt the officer’s erratic behavior required that he be suspended until his condition can be treated.

“Villagers say [the lieutenant] is not the same as he was before his operation‚Ķ We don’t want him fired, just to get the treatment he needs.”

A villager who identified himself only as “Jamnong” said the officer sometimes went running around the village, staring people down with wild eyes and waving his gun around.

In one instance, he handed his weapon to a civilian and encouraged the person to shoot him with it, he said.

“We are afraid somebody is going to get shot. It’s like he has two personalities. Sometimes he is very nice, but sometimes very strange,” K. Jamnong said.

Col Winai told the Gazette that the villagers did the right thing by reporting these incidents, which he would raise with his commander.

“Before the accident he was a good policeman and had a good relationship with villagers. But after he came back from the hospital his public behavior has reportedly changed.

“People say they have seen him waving his gun around or parking by the side of the road and dancing while still in uniform,” he said.

“Together with the superintendent, I will consider these reports, which are serious because as a police officer he is in charge of security. We haven’t seen anything out of the ordinary at the police station, but we will check his health and find an appropriate solution,” he said.

Phuket News

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