Thai Soldier Killed 26, Wounded 57 in Mall Rampage

Thailand Shooting

A group of armed commando soldiers are seen outside Terminal 21 Korat mall, in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand on Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020.A soldier who holed up in a popular shopping mall in northeastern Thailand shot multiple people on Saturday, killing at least 20 and injuring 31 others, officials said. (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalitkanjanakul)

Yesterday a Thai soldier murdered his commanding officer, shot other soldiers, then stole guns and a vehicle and went on a shooting spree in the northern Thailand city of Nakhon Ratchasima. He holed up in a shopping center for hours before finally being taken out by Thai special forces.

Here’s the Associated Press’s report . . .

By Sakchai Lalit and Tassanee Vegpongsa, AP

A soldier with a grudge gunned down 26 people and wounded 57 in Thailand’s worst mass shooting before he was fatally shot inside a mall in the country’s northeast on Sunday, officials said.

Officials said the soldier was angry over a financial dispute, first killing two people on a military base and then went on a far bloodier rampage Saturday, shooting as he drove to the mall where shoppers fled in terror.

It took police sharpshooters 16 hours to end the crisis.

Authorities said Sgt. Maj. Jakrapanth Thomma was behind the attack in Nakhon Ratchasima, a hub for Thailand’s relatively poorer and rural northeastern region. Much of the shooting took place at Terminal 21 Korat, an airport-themed mall filled with colorful Lego sculptures, a merry-go-round and huge replicas of landmarks from around the world.

“This incident was unprecedented in Thailand,” Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha told reporters as he gave the final tally Sunday morning after visiting the wounded in hospitals.

“I hope this is the only one and the last incident, and that it never happens again. No one wants this to happen. It could be because of this person’s mental health in this particular moment,” he said.

Prayuth said he was worried that people inside the mall could be accidentally hit by bullets fired by police, but added, “I have checked, that didn’t happen.”

Video taken outside the mall showed people diving for cover as shots rang out mid-afternoon Saturday. Many were killed outside the mall, some in cars, others while walking.

Nattaya Nganiem and her family had just finished eating and were driving away when she heard gunfire.

“First I saw a woman run out from the mall hysterically,” said Nattaya, who shot video of the scene on her phone. “Then a motorcycle rider in front of her just ran and left his motorcycle there.”

Hundreds of people were evacuated from the mall in small batches by police while they searched for the gunman.

“We were scared and ran to hide in toilets,” said Sumana Jeerawattanasuk, one of those rescued by police. She said seven or eight people hid in the same room as her.

“I am so glad. I was so scared of getting hurt,” she said.

Shortly before midnight, police announced they had secured the above-ground portion of the mall, but were still searching for the shooter. About 16 hours later, officials held a news conference outside the mall to announce the gunman was fatally shot.

Defense Ministry spokesman Kongcheep told Thai media that the first person killed was the commanding officer of the 22nd Ammunition Battalion, in which the suspect also served. He said the gunman had fired at others at his base and took guns and ammunition before fleeing in an army Humvee.

City and neighborhood police officers, who asked not to be identified because they were not authorized to release information, said the man fired shots as he drove to the mall. Thai Rath television aired mall security camera footage showing a man with what appeared to be an assault rifle.

The man also posted updates to his Facebook page during the rampage.

“No one can escape death,” read one post. Another asked, “Should I give up?” In a later post, he wrote, “I have stopped already.”

A photo circulated on social media that appeared to be taken from the Facebook page shows a man wearing a green camouflaged military helmet while a fireball and black smoke rage behind him. Jakrapanth’s profile picture shows him in a mask and dressed in military-style fatigues and armed with a pistol. The background image is of a handgun and bullets. The Facebook page was made inaccessible after the shooting began.

Thai rescue teams walk pass a shooting victim’s vehicle outside Terminal 21 Korat mall in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020. Thai officials say a soldier who went on a shooting rampage and killed at least 21 people and injured 42 others has been shot dead inside a mall in northeastern Thailand. (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit)

Terminal 21 Korat, a multi-level glass and steel mall, is designed to resemble an airport terminal, complete with a mock control tower and departure gates. A large model passenger jet dangles from wires beside one of the main escalators.

Each of its seven retail floors is decorated to represent a different country. A giant replica of Paris’ Eiffel Tower soars to the ceiling, while a model of London’s Big Ben dominates another area, and a massive model of California’s Golden Gate Bridge spans an open courtyard. A two-story golden Oscar statue towers over a food court.

Many malls in Thailand, including Terminal 21’s namesake in Bangkok, have metal detectors and security cameras at entrances manned by uniformed but unarmed security guards. Checks on those entering are often cursory at best.

In Bangkok, the original Terminal 21 in the bustling heart of the city was filled with shoppers as usual Sunday morning. There were no signs of increased security or commemoration of the tragedy that unfolded a few hours’ drive away.

Gun violence is not unheard of in Thailand. Firearms can be obtained legally, and many Thais own guns. Mass shootings are rare, though there are occasional gun battles in the far south of the country, where authorities have for years battled a long-running separatist insurgency.

The incident in Korat comes just a month after another high-profile mall shooting, in the central Thai city of Lopburi. In that case, a masked gunman carrying a handgun with a silencer killed three people, including a 2-year-old boy, and wounded four others as he robbed a jewelry store. A suspect, a school director, was arrested less than two weeks later and reportedly confessed, saying he did not mean to shoot anyone.

comments

  1. avatar Taurus 4 Life says:

    Too babe Red Flag poster boy’s James Campbell and Maddmaxx weren’t there they would have been rode in with several of their innumerable guns and saved the day. Well, either that or they would’ve run like cowards!

    1. avatar James Campbell says:

      Focus TrollUs4Life.
      The topic is the Thai shooting.
      Glad to clear that up for you.
      Just to clarify your place on TTAG, you’re nothing more then a fluffy little cloud drifting by on an otherwise blue sky day.
      Learn it, know it, LIVE it loser.
      Oh, and enjoy that Taurus.

      1. avatar Taurus 4 Life says:

        Keep living the Red Flag way of life, MR cockbag.

        1. avatar James Campbell says:

          Whatever idiot.
          AGAIN, where did you get your degree in psychology that enables you to identify “Red Flag” risks online?

    2. avatar Victoria Illinois says:

      “Too babe……would have been rode in….” Are you drunk?

      1. avatar Taurus 4 Life says:

        No.

      2. avatar Biatec says:

        Lol he sounds drunk.

    3. avatar possum says:

      “,would have been rode in” at some point they would have had to swim to get to Thailand , maybe not depends on where they live. , But anyway the next time James Campbell swims to England I’m hitching a ride. I’ve heard you can get some good deals on assault knives there. Haha JWM&Geoff I don’t have to swim I’m riding a human👍

      1. avatar AD of the Hinterlands says:

        Holy shit! Assault knives? Its those really big fuckers, yeah. But smaller than a sword. Like some kind of intermediate blade. With an elbow thing that goes down.

  2. avatar A survivor of Thai shooting says:

    I was only 9000 miles away at that very time. That makes me an expert on gun control.

    1. avatar Rick the Bear says:

      Is that you, David? 8>)

  3. avatar MLee says:

    That does it, no more semi-auto rifles for soldiers or at the minimum they can’t have magazines that hold more than ______<=== insert arbitrary number. This has to STOP! How often this happens is inconsequential, we need knee-jerk reactions that make no sense. Even if it saves just one person!!!!

    1. avatar Chief Censor says:

      That’s not what happens in Asia. Such a reaction mostly comes from “western” countries.

    2. avatar Rad Man says:

      “See? We told you so, we need magazine bans.” – Any politician in VA.

      1. avatar MLee says:

        We need to have a conversation about sensible gun reforms. Only thing is, if you don’t agree with our position, STFU.

        1. avatar adverse6 says:

          Hear that a lot from the National Socialist Party.

  4. avatar Made in America says:

    “Gun violence is not unheard of in Thailand. Firearms can be obtained legally, and many Thais own guns.”
    If the Dumpster gets re-elected, no doubt we’ll see more of the same.

    1. avatar James Campbell says:

      If???
      Who do you think is cakewalking the 2020 election?

    2. avatar Rick the Bear says:

      In comparison with the mass-shooting-free period during Barry’s reign?

    3. avatar jwm says:

      ‘If’ ? You guys made it impossible for him not to get a second term. Thank you.

      1. avatar MLee says:

        @ jwm
        Made in America said “if” LOL

  5. avatar DJ says:

    Only the Military and the Police should have guns.

    Sacrasm

    1. avatar jwm says:

      Only the Military Police should have guns.

      Double Secret Sarcasm.

      1. avatar Frank says:

        Only the militarized police should have firearms> Triple secret sarcasm

        1. avatar Frank says:

          Just so they can take away your firearms and control you through violence at the behest of the people in power.

    2. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

      “…mmm… that’s good sacrasm.”

  6. avatar RGP says:

    If Thailand weren’t in America, that wouldn’t have happened!

  7. avatar Jim Bullock says:

    So, guns are common n many Thais have guns. But, this guy is the only one shooting up a mall.

    So the thing to go after is… Guns? Gun owners? Whack-jobs shooting up malls?

    I’m gonna go with the third answer.

  8. avatar James W Crawford says:

    Only the police and military should have guns!

    In other news, if President Obama had a bastard son, he would look like this guy:

    https://nypost.com/2020/02/09/bronx-precinct-shooting-suspect-robert-williams-surrendered-after-running-out-of-bullets/

    1. avatar Victoria Illinois says:

      So, Bill De Blasio condemned the attack. Why? He’s the reason the guy was still on the street. The guy’s a “career criminal”. I guess he’s not in jail because he has a professional career. (sarc) When are the voters going to understand: The politicians DON’T care about YOU. Police, firemen, truck drivers, nurses, retail staff……just ignorant voters, voting for the same politicians.

  9. avatar Richard N says:

    The news media in America showed short snippets of this leaving many in America thinking this was happening in the US, early on they didn’t say this was in Thailand.

  10. avatar former water walker says:

    Glad they got him…

    1. avatar Chief Censor says:

      They got in a shootout with him. Lots of rounds fired. He didn’t give up. He had to be shot dead.

      That’s very different than the American mass shooters. The police also acted differently than American police.

  11. Where were all the GOOD GUYS concealed carriers?

    1. avatar Chief Censor says:

      Killed or attempting to confront the shooter.

      https://www.liveleak.com/view?t=CQ27p_1581175273

      https://www.liveleak.com/view?t=CMugW_1581180131

      In East Asia carrying a gun is not as necessary as in the West.

      1. avatar MLee says:

        Don’t bring a pistol to a rifle fight.

        1. avatar Chief Censor says:

          Hard to stuff a M4 into your pants and ride around on a motorcycle.

      2. avatar jwm says:

        Carrying a gun is never necessary. Until it is.

    2. avatar RCC says:

      Dennis
      Under Thai law is “fairly” easy to have a rifle or shotgun for hunting. Permits for a gun in a shop are possible. Carry permits are like New York only for the rich who can pay all the “gifts” required to get a permit.

      Ammunition tax is high. Nearly $2 per round for .22 last year.

  12. avatar Arc says:

    Thailand is one of the most peaceful places on earth, except for the south with all the saber rattling muslims. Shitty this happened ;( I still want to visit Thailand one day.

    1. avatar RCC says:

      Arc
      It is a nice place and most Thais are friendly.
      It does get annoying when all the tourist sites etc have local and tourist pricing.

      1. avatar Jabberwockey says:

        I’d like to go to Thailand too see the professional Muay Thai fights. 👊🏼

  13. avatar Frank Texas says:

    This shooting is Un-Possible! Mass shootings only happen in America. Right?

    1. avatar RGP says:

      Correct, but we’re geographically illiterate so Thailand has to be somewhere in one of the 57 states.

  14. avatar possum and the Coons of Doom says:

    What ho Mate’ys, that dinks kill ratio is way better then anything the U.S A has so far..

  15. avatar Sam Hill says:

    No matter where it happened it still took good people with guns to stop it (and always will).

  16. avatar Hannibal says:

    “It took police sharpshooters 16 hours to end the crisis…”

    I really hope he wasn’t able to go around finishing off civies while the armed authorities maintained a parameter for fear of being shot at.

    1. avatar Chief Censor says:

      They evacuated the mall and went through it looking for him. Some cops were on scene trying to distract him while the people in the mall got out. It was reported he had hostages but I have not seen confirmation. They tried to get him to give up. Eventually, they got into a gun battle with him.

  17. avatar David Keith says:

    I think I could have ended in less than 16 hours.

  18. avatar Alan1018 says:

    It’s a good thing they only let the police and military own guns there……..

  19. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

    “there’s a shooter at the mall! quick, to the tuk- tuks!”

  20. avatar adverse6 says:

    Be on the look out for Thai soldiers.

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