Three eye-witnesses yesterday told the Southern Bangkok Criminal Court that Italian photojournalist Fabio Polenghi was killed by army gunfire during the 2010 crackdown on red-shirt protesters.
Two other witnesses have already testified, on Oct 10, at the inquest into the death of Polenghi, who was killed by a high-velocity bullet on May 19, 2010.
There are another 32 witnesses who have still to appear for the state and eight more listed by the lawyer for the dead man's relatives.
Bradley Cox, 56, an American freelance documentary filmmaker, yesterday told the court that Polenghi, 48, was shot at 10.58am, with the bullet coming from the direction of Lumpini and Sala Daeng.
"We were moving and hiding along Ratchadamri Road when we heard gun shots from the direction of the tents located near the Sala Daeng side," Mr Cox told the court.
"There was some commotion behind me on the Ratchaprasong side, so I and some other people ran towards that direction.
"However, I got shot in the back of my right leg while running, so I turned back to see where the shots came from. Then I saw Fabio had already fallen down on the street."
Mr Cox said he could see soldiers moving along both sides of Ratchadamri Road, some 80 metres from his position.
He told the court he did not see or hear a single gunshot from where the red-shirt protesters were. But he said he clearly heard gunshots coming from the Lumpini and Sala Daeng side, where the soldiers were advancing.
"I turned on the video [to start recording] when I saw Fabio on the street. I saw some people trying to help him and a man who many believed was taking Fabio's camera away.
"I was surprised that he or I got shot since we were already running far away from the army. Although I could not prove or identify who shot Fabio or me, I'm one hundred per cent certain that it was the army," Mr Cox said.
Mr Cox also rejected the involvement of the so-called "men in black" in Polenghi's death.
"Of course, some of the red-shirt protesters wore other colours, including black and dark colours, but I did not see them carrying any weapons," he said.
Udon Wannasing, 48, a taxi driver from Roi Et, also told the court of how Polenghi was shot.
"I think the soldiers were trying to shoot me as they were chasing the remaining red shirts from the area in front of Lumpini Park and Ratchadamri Road from the Sala Daeng side," Mr Udon, who was a key witness in other inquests into the deaths of four other people during the 2010 protests, said.
Mr Udon said when he fell down on the street near the Sarasin-Ratchadamri junction, he looked up and saw Polenghi taking photos.
When more gunshots rang out in his direction, he said he ran away towards Ratchaprasong. That was when the Italian was killed.
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- Writer: Achara Ashayagachat