Rogue Thai soldier goes on shooting spree, killing at least 12

The soldier, believed to be Sergeant Major Jakapanth Thomma, first shot his commanding officer and two others dead at a military camp before hijacking a Humvee and shooting at civilians at a shopping mall.

Sergeant Major Jakapanth Thomma (source: Twitter)
Sergeant Major Jakapanth Thomma (source: Twitter)

A rogue Thai soldier has killed at least 12 civilians in a shooting rampage in Nakhon Ratchasima in the north-east of Thailand. The shooter remains at large, police have said.

The soldier, who some media reports identified as Sergeant Major Jakapanth Thomma, first shot his commanding officer and two others dead at a military camp before hijacking a Humvee and shooting at civilians at a shopping mall with an assault rifle. 

The gunman opened fire at different locations in the city, which is more than 250km from Bangkok, police spokesman Kissana Phathanacharoen told reporters.

Ratchasima livestreamed the shooting spree on social media before his account was taken down. "My finger is tired from pulling the trigger," he says on video .

The gunman remained close to a shopping mall and had not yet been apprehended, the police said.

Local media showed footage of the soldier getting out of a car in front of a shopping mall before opening fire, sending pedestrians running for cover.

He had posted on his Facebook page earlier in the day that “Death is inevitable for everyone.” He also posted a picture of what appeared to be his hand holding a gun.

At one point after the shooting had begun, the suspect posted “Should I give up?” before his account became inaccessible. 

Thailand has one of the highest rates of gun ownership in the world but mass shootings by soldiers targeting civilians are rare.

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