The victim was found with one gunshot wound to the forehead.
When: February 1st, 2021
Where: Chai Mongkol subdistrict, Nakhon Ratchasima province
Perpetrators: Mr. Udomsak Kao Phimai, 36
Victims: Mr. Siraphop Chitthong, 37
What: On January 30th, 2021, the body of Mr. Siraphop Chitthong, 37, was found with a lethal gunshot wound to the head. He had recently purchased a firearm and had allegedly went out to a palm grove to test it at 4AM that morning.
The events surrounding the gun death and the motives remain a mystery. Here are the facts.
The victim’s lover, Mr. Udomsak, was found sitting in a white Toyota pickup truck near the scene of the death. He stated that he was in a homosexual relationship with the victim. He had an ecommerce business selling decorative swans online. Mr. Udomsak said that someone contacted Mr. Siraphop in the days before to sell a gun. The two went out to the palm grove to test it out.
Mr. Udomsak further claimed that Mr. Siraphop entered the grove alone and sat alone in his car. He said that a villager walked out to talk to Mr. Siraphop and at this point the victim shot himself in the head in a suicide, and the villager went to report the crime.
On February 1st, 2021, the relatives of the deceased questioned the details of the case. They did not believe Mr. Udomsak’s account of the events. A leading investigator in the case also said that Mr. Udomsak’s account contradicts some of the evidence at the scene.
Mr. Yosluang, 23, was a business associate with the victim. He said that he talked to Mr. Siraphop on the morning of January 30th at 6:22AM about the business. The victim said at that time he would bring a shipment of product to him at 9AM. Mr. Yosluang agreed to send 200,000 baht for the product, which was imported from Vietnam, and waited for the delivery. But the victim never showed up. He tried to contact Mr. Siraphop but he learned then that he had been shot and killed.
The victim’s brother, Mr. Tossaporn, 31, said that his older brother “acted like a woman” and didn’t like anything violent, especially guns and crossbows. He was confident that he wouldn’t have bought a gun to go test in the palm grove. This contradicts Mr. Udomsak’s testimony that the victim went out alone to test out the gun, especially at the early hour of 4AM.
The timeline of a phone call with Mr. Yosluang at 6:22AM also contradicts Mr. Udomsak’s claim that the victim killed himself at 4AM.
The report also states that Mr. Siraphop was right handed, but the firearm hell on the left side. The victim was not shot in the temple, but rather in the middle of the forehead.
At this time authorities are gathering evidence and comparing the testimony of Mr. Udomsak with what was found at the scene of the gun death.
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My take: All of the contradictions in the story can easily be explained away.
Mr. Udomsak might not have remembered what time he was in the grove and just said that he came to find his lover at 4AM, but it could have been after that in reality.
Second, the fact that the victim’s brother said that he didn’t like guns doesn’t make a difference. If somebody wants to kill himself, then they will do it. And it will contradict past behavior.
The big question would be, did the victim really buy the gun? Or was it Mr. Udomsak? That seems to be very relevant to answering the question of whether this was a suicide or homicide.
Obviously fingerprints and searching for traces of DNA on Mr. Udomsak would be relevant too. If he shot the victim at close range in the forehead, there’d likely be some residual blood somewhere on his clothes.
At this point, unless I know more, I’d say the case remains a mystery.
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