Thai groom-to-be admits slaying bride before wedding
Investigators say there may be another woman involved
A man in Thailand has allegedly confessed to police that he murdered his bride-to-be just five days before their planned wedding ceremony.
Ronnachai Panchart had admitted killing Nontiya Krowjatturat in the residential compound of the Tambon Salui Health Promotion Hospital in Tha Sae district in the early hours of Tuesday, Chumphon provincial police chief Pol Maj Gen Sonthichai Awattanakulthep said.
He had confessed after being detained and interrogated throughout the night.
Mr Ronnachai was being taken to the crime scene for a reenactment, the provincial police commander said.
The marriage of Mr Ronnachai, 26, and Ms Nontiya, 25, a dental official at the community health office, had been arranged for this coming Sunday. The wedding ceremony was planned at a school in Sawi, Nontiya’s home district.
He is an employee of the Provincial Electricity Authority in Lang Suan district.
The motive for the murder was unclear, but there seemed to be another woman in the story, investigators said.
The couple’s wedding plans reportedly soured when the bride-to-be went to Mr Ronnachai’s house and found him staying with another woman. This lead to a quarrel. Nontiya had previously been unaware of her fiance’s behaviour.
Her father Mr Chao said on Tuesday that Nontiya told him she had problems with her future husband, but did not go into details.
Pol Maj Gen Sonthichai on Tuesday had indicated that Mr Ronnachai was a prime suspect, but did not mention him by name.
Nonthiya was killed by a shotgun blast around 1am on Tuesday and her body found by colleagues from the tambon hospital after she failed to report for duty later that morning. They went to her quarters and decided to break in through the locked door after noticing blood stains. They quickly called police.
Investigators said the direction the security camera outside her room was pointing had been changed, and the TV inside the room was still on.
Police watched footage from other cameras and saw a man concealing his face with a mask enter the compound around 1am and leave about 20 minutes later.
Police searched Mr Ronnachai’s house in Lang Suan later on Tuesday and, according to Pol Maj Gen Sonthichai, they found clothes similar to those worn by the man in the camera footage.
Police had not yet decided whether another woman Mr Ronnachai knows was actually involved in the crime.