Tourist fatally stabbed and another wounded in Phuket

Phuket police are searching for two men who allegedly attacked two Australian tourists last night, which left one woman dead and another injured, the Phuket Gazette reported yesterday.

The attack, believed to have been a botched bagsnatch attempt, occurred at Phuket's Kata Beach, about 200m from the hotel where the women were staying.

Michelle Elizabeth Smith, 59, and Tammee Lee Lynn were walking back to the hotel after dinner at about 10pm when two men approached on a motorcycle, Chalong police said.

The motorbike passenger, who was not wearing a helmet, stabbed the women with a knife.

Smith suffered a 15cm deep wound to the chest that punctured her lung and heart, while Lynn sustained injuries to her right arm.

Police believe the attack was a failed attempt to snatch the women's bags, though the two men fled the scene without taking any of the victims' belongings.

The victims managed to make it back to the hotel for help and were rushed to hospital in a car. However, Smith died en route to hospital.

Larry Cunningham, Australian honorary consul to Phuket, went to the hotel yesterday morning to make arrangements for Lynn to return home today.

Chalong police told Phuket Gazette that they have identified the two suspects and are moving in to make arrests. The men will face charges of attempted robbery and using a knife as a deadly weapon, resulting in injury and death.

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