Kampot Woman Decapitates Father, Slays Sister in Fit of Rage

A woman in Kampot province who allegedly decapitated her father and murdered her sister in a fit of rage on Tuesday evening was questioned by the provincial court Thursday, police said.

Mom Sophea, 38, used a machete and an ax to attack her father and sister after they attempted to intervene in an argument she was having with her mother and daughter, according to Kompong Trach district police chief Buth Mony.

“When her dad came, she chopped his two arms and head off,” Mr. Mony said. “When her sister came to help, she chopped her face as if she was dog meat.”

Mr. Mony said that Ms. Sophea had a history of mental illness, and had received treatment at several local hospitals.

“She used to have a husband, but her husband walked away from her because she sometimes strangled him while he was sleeping,” he said.

Ms. Sophea was arrested by district police shortly after Tuesday’s attack, which occurred at about 11:30 p.m. She was questioned twice at the Kampot Provincial Court on Thursday, according to deputy provincial police chief Mao Chan Makhori.

“It is hard for the court to question her” due to her mental state, Mr. Chan Makhori said, adding that Ms. Sophea could face life in prison if found guilty.

Provincial court officials either could not be reached or declined to comment.

Srey Sun, chief of Damnak Kantuot Khang Tbong commune, where the family lives, said Ms. Sophea had often behaved strangely—climbing trees to sing songs and walking naked through the village—and suggested that she might be possessed by an evil spirit.

“There seems to be someone ordering her to do that,” he said.

District governor Um Sinath said that he, too, was aware of Ms. Sophea’s worrying history.

“Previously, she attempted to hack others, but she was stopped by her relatives,” he said. “But this time, she had too many things in her hands, including axes and machetes.”

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