Director Who Pulled Gun at School Charged with Sexual Obscenity

Students flee as Sayan Chaleephol brandishes a gun at Thepha School on Feb. 4, 2021.

SONGKHLA — A school director who allegedly had a sexual relationship with one of his students and brandished his handgun at a school assembly was charged with sexual obscenity, police said Thursday.

Thepha School administrator Sayan Chaleephol, 60, was charged with sexual obscenity, taking a minor away from their family for indecent purposes, and unauthorized carrying of a gun, local police chief Col. Thammarat Petchnongchum said by phone.

Both obscenity and taking away a minor to commit obscenity charges carry a penalty of up to 10 years in prison.

Sayan pulled out his gun in front of his students at Thepha School on Feb. 4, to the terror of the pupils and teachers at the scene. The panic was also captured in a video that went viral on social media, but that didn’t stop one of the school directors from trying to defend Sayan and claiming that he was merely “adjusting” his belt.

Police were not convinced, and they soon charged him for the firearm offense.

Prior to the incident, Sayan was already under criminal investigation after the mother of a Matthayom 3 girl filed a complaint to the police, accusing Sayan of having a sexual relationship with her daughter.

Local police chief Col. Thammarat said there was sufficient evidence of the wrongdoing, based on witness accounts and medical examinations. Investigators have subsequently charged him with obscenity, a charge that can land Sayan in prison up to 10 years if convicted.

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