Phnom Penh’s Chbar Ampov district police say they have a suspect in custody for the April 2 murder of a 10-year-old boy and they plan to send him to court on April 8 to be prosecuted for his alleged crimes.
District police chief Mao Soeuth said on April 7 that they had arrested a suspect identified as Un Pheamon, 30, currently unemployed and residing in the same neighbourhood.
Soeuth said that Pheamon had confessed to the murder during interrogation.
According to Soeuth, the suspect said that he was giving the victim, Chea Bunheng, a ride on his motorcycle to go and buy meatballs.
Pheamon told police that while he was driving the boy slapped his head from behind. He told the boy not to do that, but he immediately slapped him again.
He claimed that this childish prank made him very angry – so angry, in fact, that he took Bunheng to a location in Bos Angkanh I village of Chbar Ampov district’s Prek Aeng commune and killed him there for it.
Dr Nong Sovannaroth, a forensic specialist at the Ministry of Health, confirmed on April 7 that the victim had been beaten to death.
“There were bruises on his face, a tear in the gums at the front, an upper lip rupture and his lower teeth were all broken,” he said.
Bunheng’s father, Chea Ponka, said that he was shocked to find out that it was Pheamon who had murdered his son because he was not only his neighbour but actually married to his niece.
He said that Pheamon had pretended ignorance this past week about the boy’s disappearance and murder, even joining in the search efforts for him and then attending his funeral.
“I do not want anything from [him], let the law deal with him for the brutal acts he committed against my child,” he said.