Wandee Sanghtong, 34, was captured Aug. 30 at a market in her hometown of Klongyai in Trat, near the Cambodian border. A search her brother’s home found a 20cm knife and a missing motorbike.
Wandee was charged with the murder of Kullanit Benjamas, 37, whose bloody body was found in the front seat of her Toyota pickup truck on Soi Praphanimit Aug. 26. She had been stabbed five times in the chest and once in the back.
Police bring confessed killer Wandee Sanghtong back to the scene of the crime for her to fill in the details of what happened that night.
Despite the wounds, the victim apparently had tried to drive herself to the hospital, but crashed the truck and died, not to be discovered until hours later.
Luan Phingphakwaen, 57, who worked as a maid for Kullanit and her 73-year-old husband Christopher Davisson, told police the victim had come home around 7 p.m. on Aug. 25, ordered her to cook some rice, then went out again, never to return.
Housing development security guard and friend Suriya Sodchuen, 42, told police he suspected Kullanit’s lesbian girlfriend, Wandee, in the killing. The two had begun a relationship a month earlier and Wandee was very jealous and possessive, he said.
Suriya told police the two women’s relationship had developed at a torrid pace, with Kullanit attempting to replace Luan as maid with her new lover. The plan failed when Davisson objected, he said.
Undaunted, the new couple opened a barber shop together on Soi Huay Yai. Khatcha said Wandee cleaned out the business of valuables before fleeing Pattaya.
The police commander said witnesses reported that Kullanit picked up two “tomboy” women at the end of her street the evening she died. One is assumed to be Wandee.
Police said Wandee confessed to arguing with Kullanit over the love triangle. In a flash of anger, she said, she stabbed her lover, only intending to injure her. After realizing she’d died, Wandee told police she hatched a plan to flee to Koh Kong in Cambodia, but was arrested before she could leave.