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Three police officers killed after young driver loses control of his Pajero SUV

THREE POLICE were killed and three others injured in a crash when a young man drove a sports utility vehicle through a police checkpoint on the outbound lanes of Borom Rachachonnanee Road in Thawee Wattana in Bangkok late on Sunday night.

Nawaphorn Phetkaew, 25, has been charged with causing death through carelessness and causing property damage.

He will be detained in custody if not granted bail when he enters a plea at the Taling Chan Court today.

Thamma Sala police, who have jurisdiction over the site, said that tests had found no alcohol or drugs in Nawaphorn's blood, and that he had no record of mental problems, as speculated initially.

The driver told police later that he was short-sighted, and not familiar with the Mitsubishi Pajero as it belonged to his father.

Parked cars 'startled him'

After an investigation, police said Nawaphorn was startled upon seeing a row of parked vehicles in front of him, and lost control of his car after suddenly hitting the brake. Nawaphorn had earlier said he was driving fast but police did not give details about whether he was speeding illegally.

The checkpoint, manned by officers from Taling Chan police station, was pulling over a number of vehicles queued in a row at around 11.30pm.

The suspect's SUV was heading toward the checkpoint then lost control at a high speed, and hit the checkpoint.

Nawaphorn made apologies to the families of the three dead officers, and said he deplored the incident.

The three dead officers were |Pol Sub-Lieutenant Anek Nunnoy and Pol Lance Corporals Songphol Phrommala and Yanyong Anant.

Their families have been granted aid money and they will be promoted posthumously to Police Major and Police Sergeant Major, respectively, national police chief Pol General Adul Saengsingkaew said.

He said the three wounded officers were treated and had also been given money to assist them.


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