Siem Reap provincial police officer Leakena Virak Rith – who was earlier arrested for allegedly assaulting a one-year-old girl in Preah Sihanouk province – was placed in pre-trial detention on March 24, according to provincial court spokesman Yin Sreang.
Sreang said Investigating Judge Seang Nara has charged the officer with aggravated violence under Article 219 of the Criminal Code.
Siem Reap provincial deputy police chief in charge of juvenile protection Duong Thavry said on March 23 that the officer was arrested on March 23 at the campus of the Cambodia-Vietnam Friendship Police Academy in Treng Trayoeng commune of Kampong Speu province’s Phnom Sruoch district.
“He is a Siem Reap provincial police officer and was taking a training course at the academy, where we found and arrested him,” she said.
The suspect, she said, admitted that he was responsible for the girl’s condition but that it was out of his “great affection” for her.
An examination showed that the girl had bruises and bite marks all over her body.
“He refused to say why. He said he loved her too much and admitted that he had bitten her. Looking at her injuries, what he did wasn’t ‘loving’ – it was violence,” Thavry said.
She said the suspect had committed violence against the child at least three times – once in Kruos village of Siem Reap town’s Svay Dangkum commune and twice in Preah Sihanouk province while he was visiting there with the girl and her mother.
The victim’s mother was a divorcee who was in a relationship with the suspect and they were cohabitating at the suspect’s house until recently.