Thai police probe robbery reported by German celebrity
BANGKOK (AP) — Police in Thailand said Thursday they were looking for a suspect in the robbery of German celebrity Cathy Hummels, who reported that her mobile phone was stolen during a nighttime attack on a southern beach.
Hummels, 34, is a presenter on German television and the wife of German footballer Mats Hummels, who plays for Dortmund. She traveled to the southern seaside province of Phang-nga last week to film the show Battle of the Reality Stars, which she hosts, according to German media.
The Phang-nga Provincial Police issued a statement after she posted about her robbery on Instagram and gave an interview to the the German newspaper Bild.
“A couple of days ago something bad happened to me,” she told her Instagram fans. “I was attacked. It was the most horrible experience of my life. I didn’t know if I would survive.”
The story in Bild quoted her as saying that as she walked on the beach near her hotel on Saturday night, an attacker came up from behind and hit her in the head, and punched her several times.
“At some point I realized that this is a matter of life and death and I started to defend myself,” she was quoted saying.
She said the thief ended up taking her cell phone and she ran back to her hotel, and just hours later flew to Dubai as was previously scheduled.
The statement from the Thai police gave a less dramatic account, based on what it said she told them when she filed a report that night.
It said she told them that the attacker punched her once on her left arm and she fell down, after which he took her iPhone and ran away.
She also told police she could not remember the robber’s appearance because it was dark, and did not want to pursue the case at that point because she was going to leave Thailand later that night and she did not want her name to appear in the media.
Hummels also refused to meet a doctor to check a bruise on her arm, the police statement said, noting that she departed around midnight on a flight to Dubai. It said they had not found the suspect yet.
Thailand is one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations and violent crime against visitors is rare but not unknown.