The Kandal Provincial Court charged two men and a boy with premeditated murder on Saturday after they confessed to strangling and bludgeoning a 10-year-old boy last week, officials said Monday.
Seng Socheath, Sa’ang district police chief, identified the victim as Thai Kimchay, 10, and two of the accused as Lim Kimleap, 24, and Chhoeun Chhy, 27, while the third suspect is a 15-year-old boy.
“They confessed that they killed the boy because they got angry and took revenge against him because he told his father that [the 15-year-old] stole money from the Slaket pagoda,” Mr. Socheath said, adding that police were searching for a fourth suspect, whom he identified only as Chan.
“[The 15-year-old] used a scarf to strangle him while [Chan] used a wooden stick to hit him three times in the back of the head until he was dead,” he said.
Mr. Socheath said Mr. Kimleap acted as a lookout while Mr. Chhy planned the attack.
A local teacher found Thai Kimchay’s body in a classroom in Troeuy Sla commune’s Slaket primary school on Thursday afternoon, Mr. Socheath said.
He added that police identified the suspects after interviewing the victim’s father, whose name he could not recall. The father told police that his son had seen the 15-year-old suspect stealing donation money from the Slaket pagoda on April 14 and 15.
“After we spoke with the father, we could identify the suspect and then we questioned him,” he said.
As police were questioning the boy, he attempted to flee from the police station but was stopped, Mr. Socheath said.
“We arrested more suspects after we questioned him,” he said, adding that police apprehended all three at their homes on Friday.
Y Sovann, an investigating judge at the provincial court, confirmed that the court charged the three on Saturday. “We charged them with the premeditated murder of the 10-year-old boy and they have been sent to the provincial prison,” he said.