Police transfer 'sex assault' lieutenant

Police transfer 'sex assault' lieutenant

Kalasin: A police lieutenant accused of sexually assaulting a teenager at a police station on Monday has been transferred pending disciplinary and criminal investigations.

According to Pol Maj Gen Somnuek Mikhawal, the provincial police chief, Pol Lt Uthit Pornprasong, attached to Sahatkhan police station, admitted to misconduct when questioned.

The alleged assault took place when the teenager, accompanied by a younger sister, went to Sahatkhan police station to pay a fine for riding a motorbike without a crash helmet, said Maj Gen Somnuek.

At the station she was greeted by a policeman and asked her what she wanted, he said.

When she told him she wanted to pay a fine, the policeman, who appeared drunk, wrapped an arm around her waist and led her to an office on the second floor. While alone in the office the policeman allegedly tried to force himself on her.

The teenager later described the ordeal on her Facebook to warn others.

Pol Maj Gen Somnuek said Pol Lt Uthit admitted he was drunk. He said it was his day off and he was drinking at home when a colleague asked him to fill in for him.

Pol Maj Gen Somnuek said investigators were gathering evidence against Pol Lt Uthit who initially faces a charge of committing gross indecency with a minor.

He said the offence carries a maximum jail sentence of 10 years and a 200,000 baht fine. The police lieutenant also faces dismissal from the force.

Pol Maj Gen Somnuek said an investigation was also under way to find out why Pol Lt Uthit was allowed to go on duty drunk.

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