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Grandmother confesses to killing her grandson

The grandmother of Bangkok schoolboy found dead in a flat in Bangkok's Prawet district last week, confessed yesterday that she had an argument with the boy and unintentionally killed him when she struck him on the head.

The boy's body was found in a fire escape at the Yongcharoen Complex building D last Friday. Police at first suspected the boy may have been killed because he witnessed a drug deal.

City police chief Pol Major-General Khamronwit Thoopkra-chang told a press conference yesterday grandmother, Somjit Jampadee, 55, confessed to fatally striking the boy.

The police chief said evidence against Somjit included blood traces, security camera footage and the blanket used in disposing the body.

She was a suspect because of her suspicious testimony but police didn't summons her as they were waiting for her to complete the boy's funeral, the chief said.

In her confession, Somjit said she and her grandson had got into an argument and that her grandson had assaulted her. After, she hit her grandson over the back of head while he was sleeping.

Charges against Somjit were pending further interrogation with other people because the case falls within the framework of the Family Act, the police chief said.

Somjit fatally shot her husband in 1993 and was found not guilty in a court battle because she testified that her husband had assaulted her, Khamronwit said.

Somjit tearfully said that the boy, having just moved to a new school for two or three months, often got into fistfights with schoolmates. She told him to stop fighting and their argument became heated.

The boy asked her for Bt500, and when she refused to give him the money right away, she said the boy grabbed a knife to threaten her.

The grandmother said the boy often hurt her, shoving her chest and punching her, but she never told the boy's mother out of fear it would break her heart. Somjit said she raised the boy since he was two years old when his dad died, but she didn't know if he was involved with drugs.

She tearfully said she only hit him once to teach him a lesson and was sorry he was dead.


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