Mother, daughter found dead in locked car

Police cordon off the area where a 34-year-old woman and her teen daughter were found dead inside their car in a field of coconut trees in Nakhon Si Thammarat on Tuesday morning. (Photo by Nujaree Raekrun)

A woman and her teen daughter who drove from Koh Samui to receive a land inheritance have been found dead inside their car before the title deeds could be transferred.

The body of Areeya Sopharak, 34,  of Surat Thani’s Koh Samui district, was in the driver’s seat and her 14-year-old daughter Alilata Sae Hor in the front passenger seat of the locked vehicle on Tuesday morning.

It was parked amid the coconut trees on the land Areeya was inheriting, in Ban Saithong of Muang district.

Police called to the scene about 9am Tuesday said there were no signs of a struggle inside the car and the engine was turned off and windows closed.

There were also no bruises on their bodies, said Pol Capt Theerakorn Thairit, deputy investigation chief at Muang police station.

The initial police conclusion was that the pair might have suffocated inside the locked vehicle.

He said Areeya ran a business on Koh Samui, Surat Thani province. Her dead parents had lived in Ban Saithong.

On Monday night, she drove from the tourist island with her daughter back to her home village in Nakhon Si Thammarat for the transfer of ownership of a block of land she had inherited from her parents.

She was believed to have arrived at the village after midnight and might not have wanted to bother her relatives for somewhere to sleep at that time of night.

She and her daughter then slept inside the locked car, with all windows firmly closed and engine turned off.

Relatives told police that they saw a car parked amid the coconut trees in the morning and initially did not know whose car it was.

When they went to look they found Areeya and her daughter inside, seemingly asleep. They knocked on the windows several times, but received no response. Worried the pair might have fallen sick, they called a rescue team for help.

Rescue workers also tried unsuccessfully to wake them up and decided to break open a window. They discovered the pair were dead.

Sorrowful relatives said the pair would not have died if they had called them and slept in their house.

Pol Col Adisak Theppawan, superintendent of Muang police station, said the cause of death had yet to be confirmed. The bodies had been sent to a hospital for post-mortem examination.

Police find no sign of a struggle inside the locked car where a woman and her daughter were found dead. (Photo by Nujaree Raekrun)

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