Police have identified the man as Michael Giavasse. The incident began on Monday evening when he stole a 9mm Glock handgun from the Pattaya Shooting Park in Bang Lamung and sped off on his motorbike firing shots into the air on his way.
A young American tourist is dead after a night of mayhem in Pattaya during which he robbed a Glock pistol from a shooting range, was surrounded by armed police and shot a TV reporter in the heel in the early hours of the morning.
A crazed young American died in Pattaya early on Tuesday morning, possibly at his own hands, after police responded to a violent incident near his condominium complex in which he threatened a Thai man and woman with a knife while later firing a pistol shot into the air.
The dead man has been named as US citizen, Michael Giavasse. It is understood that he was a native of Greece.
He was identified by police when they broke into condominium unit 266 at The Trust Residence in Bang Lamung at between 2.30 am and 3 am on Tuesday morning.
Found by police with a gunshot wound to his head
Police found the young man dead with a gunshot wound to his head on his bed. They retrieved a US passport at the scene and a 9mm Glock pistol with one round left in the magazine.
The gun had been stolen earlier on Monday evening from an outdoor shooting range in Pattaya. The young man sped off on a motorbike and was reported to have fired shots from the pistol on his way.
The range was named as the Pattaya Shooting Park in Huay Yai within the Bang Lamung district of the resort city.
Urgent call to Pattaya Police Station at 12.15 am on Tuesday morning after an altercation between the American and an 18-year-old Thai man
Police had been investigating that incident when, after midnight, they received a call from the apartment complex in Bang Lamung where 18-year-old Mr Pitchakorn Thapana had gotten involved in an altercation with the man who appeared to have gone berserk.
The Thai man had been waiting to pick up his older sister from the complex and was set upon by the American. Mr Pitchakorn’s sister threw her helmet at him during the scene.
This led Mr Giavasse to produce a knife and threaten the pair before going inside and reappearing with the stolen gun.
The American later began shooting and acting wildly near a security guard post within the complex.
A force of over 50 armed police officers responded to the incident at the apartment complex
Police Colonel Khemarin Phitsamai of Pattaya Police Station was notified of the incident at 12.15 am and the police assembled a force of more than 50 officers to deal with the violent situation involving a gunman at the premises.
The American, reportedly, had been staying in Pattaya on an extended tourist visa.
He had returned to his 4th-floor condominium unit in Block B of the complex where police messaged him to let him know that he was surrounded and requested him to lay down his weapon.
31-year-old Channel 3 TV reporter wounded
This led to a return of gunfire in which a 31-year-old reporter, Tiwakorn Krismanee, with Thailand’s Channel 3 TV was hit by a ricochet in the left heel.
Mr Tiwakorn was given first aid at the scene by medical responders and rushed to Bangkok Hospital Pattaya for emergency treatment.
After a few hours, police brought a close friend of the American to the scene to help negotiate with the 25-year-old man and coax him into surrendering.
Not clear if it was suicide or police fire
However, after receiving no response, they stormed the room only to find him dead. Officers estimated that he had lain dead within his apartment for approximately two hours.
Authorities have notified the American Embassy about the incident asking that his family be informed.
An officer at the scene however did not rule out that the American may have been killed by police fire. ‘The American man died from a gunshot wound which could have been suicide,’ he disclosed.
Police have launched an investigation into the death to determine exactly how Mr Giavasse died.
His body was sent to the Forensic Medicine Institute for an autopsy.