Our thoughts and prayers are with the family especially the son who survived the ordeal.
Utusan Online reported that three bodies of the same family had been found in various locations in Sungai Arau, Tambun Tulang and Simpang Empat. The remains were found by the riverbanks between 9am and 11am yesterday (Oct 18).
They were identified as Norzalina Baharom (daughter), 35, Norma Pin (mother), 64, and Baharom Ahmad (father), 66. Perlis Fire and Rescue Department ceased the search operation at about 7pm after failing to find the fourth missing person and they had presumed the person dead.
A police spokesperson said that the victims were believed to have slipped from the riverbanks under the flyover of Lebuhraya Kuala Perlis Changloon Kg Belat Batu, and died due to drowning. Police classified the case as sudden death after finding no visible injuries on the bodies.
However, NST reported based on the insights of the villagers around said that they could have made a pact and gone to the river to commit suicide. A relative said that the family was from Sungai Petani and they regularly returned to Kampung Belat Batu for a visit.
“However, I found it strange when I saw them alighting from the taxi near the river, about three kilometres from our village.
“My son who happened to bump into them when they got off the taxi greeted them while he was riding his motorcycle… that was the last we saw of them,” said Norhan Abdullah.
Norhan was shocked to learn that her next-of-kins were found dead after other villagers informed her. The police received a stressed call at 9am and the bodies were found shortly after.
The deceased were sent to the Sultanah Bahiyah Hospital (HSB) in Alor Star for a post-mortem while the investigation was underway.
The latest report by The Star revealed that the fourth person had been found and it’s the eldest son of the family. A witness called the police after seeing him alive the morning after.
The son said that his family planned to commit suicide by injecting some poison and then jump into the river. But he changed his mind at the eleventh hour and decided not to go along with it.
He revealed that the reason that the family made a suicide pact was because they could no longer cope with the severe financial struggles. The latest police reports stated that the motive of the three deaths was due to debt and the high cost of living. The investigation is still ongoing.