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Knife-wielding taxi driver defends his Jatukam

Legacy Phuket Gazette



Knife-wielding taxi driver defends his Jatukam | Thaiger

PHUKET CITY: Realizing that he had lost one of his precious Jatukam images, a motorbike taxi driver went on a rampage Monday, vandalizing a car and threatening residents of a government housing estate with a large knife.

Pol Capt Nikorn Chuthong of Phuket City Police Station identified the man as Aphinan Chanthana, 41.

“He went crazy after leaving one of his five Jatukam images at an amulet stall [at the bus station on Phang Nga Rd]. He believed that staff at the stall had stolen it, but after nobody there confessed to stealing it, he used a large knife to damage a car belonging to one of the staff,” he said.

“After that, about 11 am, he rode off furiously on his motorbike. But as he was fleeing, he saw someone following him. Thinking it was the owner of the car he had just damaged, he rode his motorbike to the government housing estate on Koh Sireh,” Capt Nikorn said.

Aphinan parked his motorbike outside the estate and then walked inside to where he encountered Kornthip Sealai, 23, who lives in Building 4 with her young brother.

He threatened Kornthip with the knife, demanding that she walk back up to her single-room apartment on the second floor, where her younger brother was.

Some time later, Aphinan heard someone calling out to him from the back of the building, and so he went out onto the back balcony where he saw a policeman in a Fire Department cherry picker talking to him through the wire security grate.

“The policeman tried to persuade him to surrender, but he insisted that the police should go away,” Capt Nikorn said.

“While Aphinan was talking with the policeman, Kornthip and her brother sneaked out of the room. Police then flooded the room with ‘fire extinguishing chemicals’ to subdue him, but he protected himself by breathing through a piece of cloth.

“Two hours later, he began to feel weak and he walked downstairs and surrendered to police,” Capt Nikorn explained.

“Aphinan is currently at Phuket Provincial Prison. He has been charged with destruction of other people’s property and with trespassing,” he added.


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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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