BANGKOK (AP) — Police in Thailand have arrested a man suspected of killing his ex-wife in the country’s latest incident of deadly gun violence in a shopping mall.
The suspect was arrested early Wednesday morning in Phetchaburi province southwest of Bangkok, and had acknowledged he carried out the shooting at the Century Plaza mall in Bangkok, police deputy spokesman Col. Krissana Pattanacharoen told state broadcaster MCOT.
The suspect has been identified as Danusorn Noomcharoen, a salesman at another Bangkok mall. He is accused of fatally shooting his former spouse who was working at a beauty clinic at Century Plaza and wounding another female employee.
The shooting was the third instance in six weeks of gun violence at a mall, and came just over a week after a disgruntled soldier fatally shot 29 people in the northeastern city of Nakhon Ratchasima before being killed by security forces in a shopping center where he holed up for about 16 hours.
Danusorn was reported to have recently divorced his wife of 10 years, Piyanut Chatthai.
Police found several handwritten notes at his apartment telling them not to chase him for two days as he needed time to kill his ex-wife’s new boyfriend and would commit suicide afterward, according to Thai media reports.
The suspect’s mother was reported to have negotiated with him for 10 hours before he surrendered to police at 4 a.m. Wednesday.
Danusorn was charged with several offenses including murder and illegal possession and discharge of a weapon.
Thailand has a high number of guns per capita in civilian hands and a high number of gun deaths. The research team of Small Arms Survey estimated in 2018 that there are 15.14 civilian firearms per 100 people, the highest level in Southeast Asia.
A masked gunman in January in the central Thai city of Lopburi killed three people and wounded four others in a mall while robbing a gold shop with a handgun fitted with a silencer. One of the dead was a 2-year-old boy. A school director was arrested less than two weeks later and reportedly confessed, saying he did not mean to shoot anyone.