A 70-year-old man was killed and 12 people injured in Kompong Chhnang province on Friday when an angry 18-year-old threw a grenade into the crowd at a live music event following an argument, police said.
The victim, Phork Khat, died at the Kompong Chhnang provincial hospital after being fatally wounded in the stomach by shrapnel from the exploding grenade, which left three others critically injured and nine more with less serious injuries.
“It’s the first incident I have seen of a grenade attack on a crowd at nighttime and it left many revelers injured,” said Ly Bunsong, deputy police chief of Toek Phos district, adding that a police van, using its siren, rushed the victims to the provincial referral hospital.
The incident happened at 10 p.m., during a live music show and dancing event in Toek Phos district’s Chieb commune, organized by local musician Hy Heng, which had drawn a crowd of youths from a neighboring village.
The suspect, Ouk Thim, had an argument with the group and went to his house to retrieve a Soviet-made grenade he had found in a rice field three months earlier. When he returned to the concert, he threw the grenade into the crowd, Mr. Bunsong said.
“We learned that this was a revenge attack. We arrested the suspect two hours later in his village in Chieb commune and the suspect confessed to throwing the grenade because he was an-gry with the youths,” Mr. Bunsong said.
The suspect was sent to Kompong Chhnang Provincial Court yesterday morning, charged with intentional killing and sent to pretrial detention, said provincial police chief Prak Vuthy.
This is the second grenade attack in a week in the country. Unknown assailants on May 17 tossed a grenade at the home of Kompong Thom deputy prosecutor Say Nora, who was not at home at the time of the attack. Police said the attack was motivated by Mr. Nora’s efforts to investigate illegal logging rings in the area.
In January, an attack on a wedding party in Kompong Thom province, in which the grenade exploded on top of the party tent and rained down shrapnel, killed 10 people and injured almost 40.