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Woman cut rope holding painters 26 floors high, Thai police say

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS
                                A Myanmar national identified as Song, one of two painters rescued from a high-rise condominium in Thailand, talked to reporters at Pak Kret police station in Nonthaburi near Bangkok, Wednesday. A resident of the building cut the support rope for the two painters, apparently angry she wasn’t told they would be doing work, and left them hanging above the 26th floor until a couple rescued them, police said Wednesday.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS

    A Myanmar national identified as Song, one of two painters rescued from a high-rise condominium in Thailand, talked to reporters at Pak Kret police station in Nonthaburi near Bangkok, Wednesday. A resident of the building cut the support rope for the two painters, apparently angry she wasn’t told they would be doing work, and left them hanging above the 26th floor until a couple rescued them, police said Wednesday.

BANGKOK >> A resident of a high-rise condominium in Thailand cut the support rope for two painters, apparently angry she wasn’t told they would be doing work, and left them hanging above the 26th floor until a couple rescued them, police said Wednesday.

The woman is facing attempted murder and property destruction charges, Pol. Col. Pongjak Preechakarunpong, chief of the Pak Kret police station north of the Thai capital, told The Associated Press.

Pongjak did not say what prompted the suspect to cut the rope, but Thai media reported that she was apparently frustrated when the workers appeared outside her room and hadn’t seen an announcement by the condo that they would be doing work on Oct. 12.

A video clip on social media showed two painters asking the residents on the 26th floor to open the window and let them in. One of the painters, a Myanmar national named Song, told the Thai media that he and his two friends had lowered themselves from the 32nd floor to repair a crack on the building.

When he reached the 30th floor, he felt that the rope was heavier and when he looked down, he saw someone on the 21st floor open a window and cut his rope. He tried asking for help from other units, but nobody was in. The third colleague continued to support them from the top floor, said Praphaiwan Setsing, the resident who saved them.

Praphaiwan said her British husband noticed one painter signaling for help and called her to talk to them.

“This incident is shocking and should not happen at all,” she said.

The management of the condo accompanied the painters to report the incident to the police. The 34-year-old woman at first denied she responsible, but police sent the severed rope for a fingerprint and DNA analysis, media reported.

On Wednesday, the woman and her lawyer appeared at the police station. After the police showed her the CCTV footage and the forensic evidence, she confessed but denied any intention to kill the workers.

Pongjak said the suspect was temporarily released. Police will file an indictment at the provincial court within 15 days, he said. She could face a prison term up to 20 years if found guilty on a charge of attempted murder.

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