A five-year-old girl died from her wounds when a shotgun discharged while she and two young boys were playing alone in a room in a village chief’s house in Phanom Thuan district on Monday.
Pol Lt Col Chaiyos Prutipongpanich, the Phanom Thuan chief investigator, said the shooting occurred about 1.20pm at house No 36 in Moo 2 village of tambon Nong Sarai. The house belonged to Manop Somkid, the village chief.
Police and medics from Tambon Nong Sarai Hospital called to the house found the girl, Natnicha Onsomkij, lying unconscious in a pool of blood in a room.
She had been hit in the left leg above the knee by a shotgun round which continued through to her right leg. The deep wounds in both legs caused profuse bleeding.
The girl was rushed to Chao Khun Phanomthuan Hospital, where she was later pronounced dead.
Saranya Somnam, 31, a daughter-in-law of the house owner, said she was in the house at the time. The girl and two boys aged six and seven, who were cousins, had returned early from school and gone to play in the room.
She later heard a gunshot and rushed to the room. Natnicha was slumped against the wall, bleeding heavily from both legs. There was a shotgun on the floor nearby. The two boys were looking at her in a deep shock. She called the police.
Pol Lt Col Chaiyos said the shotgun was state property assigned to the village security team and kept by the village chief.ad
Mr Manop, the village chief, stored the gun in the room where the children went to play.
He said it was still not clear how the children managed to get hold of the loaded gun and how it was discharged. The police investigation was continuing.
(Photo: Piyarat Chongcharoen)