An unidentified suspect was arrested this afternoon in the capital’s Daun Penh district after being attacked by what appeared to be campaign rally-goers after he allegedly commandeered a truck and began colliding into other vehicles in a purported intoxicated stupor, local authorities said today.
Watch the video tweeted by Hong Kong Free Press here. Note: the info in the tweet was later determined to be incorrect.
Just in: Foreigner ripped from a truck by locals in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Witness tells HKFP he ploughed into traffic w/@ least 1 dead. pic.twitter.com/rR1FivVLjr
— Hong Kong Free Press (@HongKongFP) June 2, 2017
Keo Sokha, the police chief for Phsar Kandal 1 commune said the suspect – believed to be a foreign national – stole the truck laden with earth near the Hong Bridge on Koh Pich, driving it up Sisowath Quay until he was apprehended by the Chamkarmon district police.
“He was [on] drugs and went into the truck and drove it and hit another car, and authorities chased him and arrested him,” he said, adding that nobody was injured in the collision.
Keo Sarun, Chamkarmon Deputy District police chief said the truck had hit a car near Aeon Mall but the owner has chosen not to file a complaint.
“The driver of the truck did not remove the key, and the foreigner on drugs went into the truck and drove it into another car … when the owner of the car learned the foreigner was on drugs, he did not file a complaint,” he said.
A Tonle Bassac commune police officer who asked not to be named, said the incident occurred around 3pm, and that the foreigner – whose identity remains unknown – was slightly injured by a mob that descended upon the truck before police arrived on the scene.
Tom Grundy, a journalist with the Hong Kong Free Press, witnessed the incident shortly before 4pm and uploaded a video of the shirtless male suspect being extricated from the stolen truck and beaten by an angry mob, some of them wearing CPP paraphernalia.
“I heard horns blaring and I thought it was just another [CPP] political rally ahead of [election day] … but then I saw this battered truck, a lot of the windows were smashed,” he said.
“Dozens of locals … dragged him from the cabin – this guy, he was already quite bloodied up – and the police were there quite rapidly and they dragged him over to the side,” he continued.
Asked his name or where he was from, Grundy says the foreigner replied, “I don’t know, I don’t know.” According to Grundy the foreigner seemingly spoke Khmer and claimed to be a Cambodian.
“I don’t know if he is mixed race … but he certainly looked like a Westerner,” he added.