Donald George Crawford
Police in Nonthaburi province have launched an investigation into the death of an Australian man who seemingly died of a benzodiazepine overdose after a fight with his Thai boyfriend.
Pol Capt Narongruet Bridamai from Rattanathibet Provincial Police Station was informed of the incident at 22:30 on Thursday evening. Police, medical staff and volunteers of Ruam Katanyu Foundation were sent to the Condo City Home on Rattanathibet Rd in Nonthaburi’s Bang Graso subdistrict.
In room no. 378/30 on the third floor of the 24-storey building, officers discovered the body of Donald George Crawford, a 54-year-old man from Devenport, Tasmania, Australia.
Describing the scene, investigator Pol Capt Narongruet said, “He was lying on the floor next to the bed with his face up. He was wearing a yellow t-shirt and striped shorts.” Documents found in his residence indicated that Mr Crawford worked in the IT sector. Scattered all over his bed, police found a surprisingly large quantity of benzodiazepines, a family of tranquilizers often used for treating sleeplessness, anxiety and panic attacks. An overdose can cause deep unconsciousness and sometimes death.
Pakin Putragun, the 35-year-old boyfriend of the deceased, provided vital background information that may help to solve the case. According to his statement, he and Mr Crawford lived together in a one-bedroom apartment. Two days prior to the death, Mr Pakin visited the flat, but ended up having a vehement argument with Mr Crawford. “He liked to fight,” his boyfriend said, adding that the owner of the condominium had tried to de-escalate their conflicts on a regular basis.
During their last fight, Mr Crawford threatened to kill himself if Mr Pakin left him. Believing it to be an empty threat, Mr Pakin left the property and returned on Thursday evening only to find Mr Crawford’s dead body in the apartment.
A doctor at the scene estimated that Mr Crawford had been dead for at least six hours. He was unable to definitively determine whether the overdose was the cause of death, but said it seemed to be most likely scenario.
Rescue volunteers transported the body to the morgue where a post-mortem examination is expected to confirm the cause of death. The Australian Embassy in Bangkok has been notified of Mr Crawford’s death.
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