Police Chief’s Son Fled Fatal Crash: Authorities

The son of a Kompong Cham province police chief fled on foot after crashing his SUV into a mo­torcycle on Tuesday evening, kill­ing a man and injuring his wife and child, police and rights workers said.

A man at the scene of the accident was then shot by police who opened fire after a scuffle broke out while an officer tried to take the crashed SUV’s dislodged license plate from a villager who was trying to keep it as evidence, local rights group Adhoc said.

Veal Vong commune police chief Kong Sokhom said that a Mitsubishi Pajero driven by the son of provincial deputy police chief Seng Sokim hit the family of Chay Sophal, 36, killing him instantly and injuring his wife and child in Kompong Cham district.

Sim Heang, an investigator for Adhoc, said that eyewitnesses claimed that Seng Sokim’s son was drunk and fled the scene on foot after crashing the Pajero.

Shortly after the crash, a police officer, identified as Touch On, arrived at the scene and shot Yem Sim, 27, in the chest with a K-54 pistol after he refused to hand over the SUV’s license plate, Sim Heang said.

Yem Sim was a friend of the dead man and was trying to keep the car’s plate as evidence, Sim Heang said, adding that police have refused to discuss the accident or reveal the name of the police chief’s son or his age.

Yem Sim is being treated at a Kompong Cham hospital, he added.

Sim Heang said the victim’s family reported that Seng Sokim has paid some $250 to Chay Sophal’s widow.

Seng Sokim declined comment when contacted by telephone Thursday.

“I do not want to answer any questions related to this case,” he said before hanging up on a reporter.

Kompong Cham Provincial Governor Hun Neng said he was too busy to comment and referred questions to provincial police chief Nuon Samin, who could not be contacted.

Speaking by telephone from his hospital bed, Yem Sim said that he has filed a complaint at the provincial police office demanding compensation for being shot without reason. An unknown provincial police officer has already given him $100, he said.

The hit-and-run is only the latest in a series of vehicle related incidents involving the children of high-ranking officials.



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