School director resigns following rape, firearm charges

School director resigns following rape, firearm charges

Students in front of the closed main gate at Thepa School in Thepa district of Songkhla. (Photo: Assawin Pakkawan)
Students in front of the closed main gate at Thepa School in Thepa district of Songkhla. (Photo: Assawin Pakkawan)

SONGKHLA: The director of Thepha School in Thepha district, accused of raping a Mathayom Suksa 3 student and carrying a gun in public, has tendered his resignation.

Sangkorn Rakchuchuen, director of the Zone 16 Secondary Education Office, said on Monday that Sayan Chaleephol, 60, had submitted his resignation letter to the office on Friday, effective on Feb 15.

Mr Sangkorn said the letter had been forwarded to the Songkhla Education Office for approval.

He said Mr Sayan's resignation would not affect the disciplinary investigation already begun against him. If found guilty, he could be dismissed from government service.

The mother of a Mathayom Suksa 3 girl student had earlier filed a police complaint, accusing Mr Sayan of rape and depriving a child of parental protection. She provided some evidence to back her charges.

On Feb 4, Mr Sayan, during the school's morning flag-raising assembly with hundreds of students and their teachers present, apologised for his “personal problem” and then reportedly pulled out a gun, saying he wanted to make his apology loud, sending students and teachers into shock and panic.

As the students fled, some teachers intervened to prevent Mr Sayan from his seeming intention of committing suicide.

That same day, Thursday, he went to Thepha police station and handed the gun over to police. The gun was found to be properly registered.

The school was closed for the rest of the week. 

Pol Col Thammarat Phetnongchum, the Thepha police chief, said on Friday that investigators were now handling two cases against the accused school director - the alleged rape of a girl student, and carrying a firearm in public.

He said the girl had undergone a physical examination and the results were expected soon.

Pol Col Thammarat said he would see to it that the investigation into the charges was concluded this week.

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