Taxi fare fight gets American killed in machete murder in Thailand


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A 50-year-old American man, Troy Lee Pilkington, was killed in Thailand on Saturday night after he and a 32-year-old taxi driver, Cherdchai Utamacha, engaged in a fight over a cab fare.

Pilkington reportedly refused to pay the 51 baht fare for the car ride, and when the Cherdchai demanded the money, Pilkington threw an empty coffee cup at the car. This prompted the Cherdchai to take a machete out of the drunk, at which point Pilkington rushed toward him as if to hurt him. Cherchai driver claims he panicked and slashed the man a few times before the two struggled for awhile.

When Pilkington fell to the ground, Cherchai fled the scene, later dumping the machete in a canal. He also later discarded his shirt. However, police were still able to track him down, and he was arrested as his apartment in Bangkok’s Prawes district early Sunday morning.

Police say Cherdchai confessed to the crime, and will be charged with murder and carrying a weapon in public.
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