Events unclear in dismembered mum case, say police
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Events unclear in dismembered mum case, say police

Neighbours gather in front of the townhouse in Bang Khunthian district, Bangkok, after the dismembered body of a 42-year-old woman was found in the refrigerator on Monday. Her son, 20, was also found shot in the head and later died. (Photo supplied)
Neighbours gather in front of the townhouse in Bang Khunthian district, Bangkok, after the dismembered body of a 42-year-old woman was found in the refrigerator on Monday. Her son, 20, was also found shot in the head and later died. (Photo supplied)

Police are keeping an open mind on the events leading to the grisly discovery of a woman's dismembered body in her own refrigerator and the death of her son, found shot in the head at their home in Bangkok.

Pol Col Kritsana Pattanacharoen, a deputy spokesman, said on Tuesday people should not jump to hasty conclusions about the case, and instead await the outcome of the investigation. 

For now, investigators were waiting for the autopsy results, which were due within a 30-day timeframe. The investigation period could be extended if necessary, Pol Col Kritsana said.

The discovery by a neighbour of the dismembered body of 42-year-old Yuree Thaowan in a refrigerator on the first floor of her two-storey townhouse on Soi Tha Kham 28 in Bang Khunthian district, Bangkok, on Monday sent shockwaves through the local community.

Police called to the townhouse also found her son, Sira Somdej, 20, on the floor with a gunshot wound to the head. He was still alive and a handgun was found next to his body. 

Sira, a second-year computer engineering student at Rajamangala University of Technology Krungthep, was later pronounced dead at Nakhon Thon Hospital.

Pol Maj Gen Chokchai Ngamwong, chief of the metropolitan police Division 9, said on Tuesday that  investigators needed time to look into the case.

Asked about speculation the murder might be the work of the dead woman's son, who then killed himself, he said there were no witnesses to confirm it.

An initial investigation found only the 42-year-old divorcee and her son in the townhouse at the time. Two neighbours came to the house and discovered the body parts in the refrigerator.

When police arrived at the house, they found Sira was shot. The two people who said they found the body in the fridge told police that the woman's son shot himself, Pol Maj Gen Chokchai said.

Nothing had been ruled out at this stage, he said in response to reporters' questions if a third party may have been involved. 

Footage from local surveillance cameras, mobile phone records and other details were still being examined. 

The two neighbours were friends of the dead woman and would be questioned further, Pol Maj Gen Chokchai said.

Media reports mentioned earlier that one of the friends who found the body said she went to the house after trying unsuccessfully to phone Yuree since about 8pm on Sunday to discuss business matters.

She was greeted by her son, who said his mother was not home, and did not want her to go inside. She insisted and entered the house. After she looked around she noticed the fridge was ajar, and looked inside.

Pol Col Theera Theraphan, chief of Tha Kham police, said there were no visible blood stains on the knives found at the woman’s house, but they were being subjected to forensic examination. 

Doctors confirmed the woman's entire body was recovered, the Tha Kham police chief said.

The woman who reported finding the body, Voranut Wongchai, 35, said she did not know of any reason why the son would have committed the crime.  

When she arrived at her friend’s house, Sira had cried and said he wanted to be alone. If she had not found the dismembered body of the refrigerator, Sira may have fled, Ms Voranut said, speaking after giving her account to police. 

According to Ms Voranut, there were medicines, money and gold jewellery in the young man's bag. He also had around 50 pistol cartridges.

She did not know if her friend’s son suffered from depression. Yuree had never talked to her about it.

Relatives of Yuree on Tuesday voiced their disbelief that Sira would kill and dismember his mother.

Lon Thaowan, 63, and Veerasak Kiewmongkhol, both relatives of the dead woman, travelled from Sukhothai province to Siriraj Hospital to collect Yuree's body for funeral rites at Wat Banrai in Sukhothai.

Mr Lon said everyone was in a state of shock, and could not believe her son may have killed her. 

Social media quoted friends of Sira as saying he was left handed, but the position of the gun suggested  he shot himself using his right hand.

However, Mr Lon said Sira had been right-handed since he was a child.  

He did know that Sira, who was his nephew, had been treated for depression at the Somdet Chaopraya Institute of Psychiatry two years ago. He did not know whether Yuree and her son had any problems.

Pol Maj Gen Ittiphol Atchariyapradit, deputy metropolitan police chief, said later on Tuesdsay that  CCTV footage  confirmed only the mother and her son had been in the house since Saturday. No other people had entered the house until the two neighbours arrived.

Pol Maj Gen Ittiphol said a knife and a hammer were used in the murder. He said that at this stage of the investigation, there was only one suspect, Sira.

A rescue worker and two officials check the refrigerator at the house where a dismembered woman was found. (Photo supplied)

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