Officer Tried for Shooting Wife of Fleeing Driver

A police officer charged with attempted murder for shooting at an SUV that was fleeing a traffic accident—resulting in its passenger being grazed by a bullet—stood trial at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Thursday.

Nou Sopheak, 32, who according to his lawyer is a penal police officer at the Interior Ministry, is accused of firing a bullet that grazed the neck of Lim Lalen, 33, while pursuing her husband’s speeding SUV as he fled an accident in Chamkar Mon district on August 9.

“The accused admitted that he shot, but not at the victim,” deputy prosecutor Kol Bon told the court.

“He claims he shot two rounds into the air. I believe there was a shooting, but claiming that he shot into the air, I do not believe it at all.”

In his closing remarks, defense lawyer Ly Soklay said the court was shown no evidence—not the victim’s wound, damage to the SUV, shell casings or the gun—arguing that his client should therefore be cleared of the charge.

“All this evidence is important, but in fact, there was not even one” piece presented, he said. Judge Keo Mony said he would issue a verdict on June 23.

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