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The 12-year-old son of the man shot dead by police protests today

Phuket Police Accused: Family in Coffin Protest

Wednesday, November 25, 2009
RELATIVES of a man who was killed this week by police claim the man had his hands in the air and was not armed when he was shot dead.

They carried the man's body in a coffin to Provincial Hall today in protest at what they claimed was his unwarranted murder.

Senior police said the officers involved had merely done their duty in a showdown and gun battle about noon on Monday at Phuket City's Suan Luang park.

The family begged to differ. Among 10 family members who met the Governor, Wichai Praisa-ngob, at Provincial Hall today were the dead man's father and his 12-year-old son.

A gun had been recovered from near the lake, into which the dead man, Amnad Rodpradit, 32, fell when shot.

Khun Amnad had fired five shots at police, Chief of the Phuket City Police Station, Colonel Wanchai Akpornpis, told the media. He said a single shot killed Khun Amnad, the bullet piercing the left side of his chest.

Khun Amnad had 10 yah bah pills in a pocket and was already wanted on a warrant over thefts in the Thalang area, Colonel Wanchai said.

Two men in the gang of five that two police patrol officers pursued escaped by swimming across a lake in the park and have yet to be captured.

The men had been trying to sell a stolen religious statuette at a nearby store when the passing police surprised them.

The governor gave 10,000 baht today to the family for the future education of 12-year-old Anupan. His grandfather Wichid, 55, questioned why his son had died, if all he had done was stolen something. The family would like the governor to intervene in the case.

On Monday, Phuketwan interviewed the policeman who fired the fatal shot at the scene. He said he was being fired upon as the gang fled, and shot back in self-defence.

In a separate case, a man accused of being a regular 'snatch and ride' thief around the Thalang area has been apprehended and charged.

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