Raucous Youths Kill Police Officer, Wreak Havoc

A commune police officer died Wednesday night in Kompong Cham province from a stab wound to the neck after he and two other officers tried to break up a party hosted by area youths, the provincial police chief said.

Lon Sirath, 36, died about 8 pm in Stung Trang district’s Prek Kak commune, Provincial Police Chief Nuon Samin said. The slain officer, along with two other commune po­licemen, was investigating a large dance party at which people were reportedly extorting 1,000 riel from passing motorists by stopping them on a nearby road.

Mr Nuon Samin said one motor­ist refused to pay and had his arm broken by members of the dance par­­ty, prompting the officers’ ar­riv­al. When the police got out of their car, five youths attacked them, one piercing Mr Lon Sirath’s neck.

Police were not able to use their pis­tols because of the large crowd of bystanders and dim light at the out­door party, which was welcoming the New Year, Mr Nuon Samin said.

He said police later arrested two youths, including the alleged kill­er, and were looking for the three others, who remained at large Thurs­­­­day. He declined to identify the detained pair, citing an ongoing investigation.

Lieutenant General Khieu Soph­eak, spokesman for the Interior Ministry, said police officers are “rare­ly” killed in the line of duty. Al­though he was not aware of the case in Kompong Cham and said there was no official figure totaling the number of officers who have fall­en while on duty, he said the death of Mr Lon Sirath was likely the year’s first killing of a police officer.

“We share our sympathies with the victim’s family,” he said.

(Additional reporting by Frank Radosevich)


Related Stories

Latest News

The Weekly DispatchA weekly newsletter from The Cambodia Daily delivering news, analysis and opinion to your inbox. Published every Friday at 11:30am. Sign up today.