Man Gunned Down in Noodle Restaurant; Motive Unknown

A man was gunned down at a noodle shop in Phnom Penh’s Boeng Keng Kang I commune Sunday night after running inside the restaurant while attempting to flee from two attackers, an official said.

Witnesses told police that two men assaulted Lor Sopheap, 32, across the street from the Phnom Penh Sheng He Noodle Soup and Suki Soup restaurant at the intersection of streets 63 and 392 at about 7 p.m., said Bun Sopheak, deputy governor of Chamkar Mon district.

In an attempt to escape the men, Lor Sopheap ran across the street and into the restaurant, Mr. Sopheak said.

“The suspects chased the victim and shot him inside the restaurant,” he said, adding that police found four empty bullet casings inside the restaurant but were not sure how many times the victim was shot.

Mr. Sopheak said relatives of Lor Sopheap told police that he had worked at a factory and got married about four months ago.

“We don’t know what the motive was,” he said. “Police are working.”

Borey Pech, 25, who lives near the restaurant, said he heard a group of people arguing and fighting just moments before he heard four gunshots.

“I went to see and saw that the victim had been shot,” he said.

By 9 p.m., more than 50 people had gathered in front of the restaurant as police inspected the scene inside.

Despite an attempt to block out prying eyes by hanging a bedsheet over the front door, Lor Sopheap’s body was visible through the large windows facing the street.

At about 9:30 p.m., police escorted two women into the restaurant through a side door. Just minutes later, however, both shoved their way through the crowd of onlookers and onto the street.

“It is true. It is Pheap,” one woman wailed before being driven away on a motorbike.

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