RAYONG - A man who set fire to his home last month has been arrested and charged with killing his elderly mother with a large pruning knife while she was having a meal at the house on Thursday night.
Poenchan Sodakaew, 69, was found lying dead by neighbours inside her house at Pak Khlong Tha Rua Klaeng community in tambon Klaeng, Muang district, around 8pm, police said.
Her son, Chatchawal, 41, was caught shortly afterwards by his mother's angry friends, who handed him over to police. A billhook almost one metre long was taken from him, Thai media reported on Friday.
Ms Wanphen, the man’s elder sister, told police she saw her brother sharpening his billhook in front of their house while she and her mother were eating together. There were no signs of any pending violence. She finished her meal and went to her room, leaving her mother eating alone.
Shortly after, she heard her mother scream. She immediately went to see what was happening and was shocked to see her lying in a pool of blood. She saw her brother walking away, carrying the billhook. She shouted to her neigbhours to grab him.
A police investigation found that Chatchawal had worked on a fishing boat before returning home. He had not worked again as he experienced hallucinations from taking illicit drugs. Last month, he had set fire to the house, but neighbours managed to put out it.
Chatchawai was held in police custody for legal action.