I was very sorry [to hear of the deaths] and I’m committed to hunt for the perpetrator
Two police officers have been shot dead after a wanted man they were trying to arrest led them on a car chase through the city before opening fire.
The incident occurred yesterday at about 3:00am on Street 516 in Phnom Penh’s Boeung Kak I commune in Tuol Kok district. The gunman remains at large.
Phnom Penh municipal police chief Touch Naruth said municipal penal crime police officers Kong Vichet, 32, and Roeun Po, 33, were shot dead after trying to apprehend a man on a motorcycle, who was wanted for gang-related activity.
The two police officers were on patrol in Phnom Penh when they spotted the wanted man by the public park near NagaWorld.
When the gunman saw the police he sped off and a five-kilometre chase ensued. At St 516 the police cut the motorcycle off and Kong Vichet stepped out of the car to arrest the man.
The gunman fired two bullets from a handgun killing Kong Vichet instantly.
He then turned on Roeun Po, who was sitting in the driver’s seat, and fired numerous bullets, leaving him dead at the wheel. The gunman then sped off.
Touch Naruth said the bodies of the victims were being kept at Sansom Kosal pagoda in Phnom Penh for a traditional Khmer funeral service.
“I was very sorry [to hear of the deaths] and I’m committed to hunt for the perpetrator,” he said.
The wife of Kong Vichet Sok Leakhena, 31, who has two daughters aged one and three years-old, said when police first broke the news to her she did not believe it.
The mother of Roeun Po Mil Sok, 53, said she and her son were planning a family reunion in Dangkor district’s Pong Teuk commune on Saturday night but now they would gather at Mil Sok’s funeral instead.
Roeun Po had been with the police force for 10 years and Kong Vichet three years.
The total number of police officers shot and killed on duty this year now stands at three.
Last month, one police officer was shot dead by unidentified men while he was investigating a group of youths.