US fugitive sought in Thailand over disappearance of pregnant wife

Police uses sniffer dogs to find bloodstained mattress 15km from house as man flees on motorcycle

Gustaf Kilander
Washington, DC
@GustafKilander
Thursday 06 May 2021 16:58
<p>Jason Matthew Balzer reportedly fled his home in the Nan province in northern <a href="/topic/Thailand">Thailand</a> earlier this week after his wife disappeared</p>

Jason Matthew Balzer reportedly fled his home in the Nan province in northern Thailand earlier this week after his wife disappeared

Thai police are hunting an American fugitive after the disappearance of his wife, who was four months pregnant, after finding his mattress stained with blood.

Jason Matthew Balzer reportedly fled his home in the Nan province in northern Thailand earlier this week after his wife, 32-year-old Pitchaporn Kidchob, disappeared.

The wife’s mother, Anong Tanya, 52, said her daughter had not answered her phone since Sunday and went to visit the couple on 3 May out of concern for her child, The Daily Mail reported.

But Balzer left on a motorcycle carrying a bag as Ms Tanya got to the home. She claims she found bloodstains on the bed, the washing machine and in other parts of the house.

Balzer went to Thailand after being sentenced to probation for assault in Colorado in 2019.

“They met in Phuket and dated for one year before marrying,” Ms Tanya said according to The Mail.

“When I asked where my daughter was her husband told me something in English that I didn’t understand.

“He left with a bag despite a storm coming. My daughter’s things were still in the house. I tried to call my daughter’s phone but Jason was holding it. He cancelled the call while it was ringing in front of me,” Ms Tanya said.

More than 20 police officers later arrived at the home and discovered more blood in the bedroom and that a mattress was missing. After using sniffer dogs, they found the mattress on Tuesday more than 15km away, stained with blood.

Balzer’s bloodstained shirt and an air purifier were found nearby. According to The Mail, CCTV footage shows Balzer riding away on his bike carrying a black backpack. 

According to police interviews, Ms Kidchob went missing on 29 April and neighbours had heard them fighting before Balzer left the home.

Tracing his movements via CCTV, police found that Balzer was travelling towards the province of Phrae.

Police Lieutenant Colonel Tanongsak Phitwitchatham said his disappearance was “very suspicious”.

He said: “Officers are searching for the missing woman and her husband. She could be dead but we do not know until we find a body or we have interviewed the husband. It’s very suspicious that he disappeared so we need to speak with him urgently.”

The Longmont Times-Call reported on 6 December 2019 that Balzer pleaded guilty to third-degree assault in Boulder District Court. He was sentenced to two years of probation. 

Balzer was originally facing a charge of attempted murder. A woman called police on 25 April after Balzer came into her home as she was sleeping, and told the woman he wanted to have sex.

After the woman said she was tired, Balzer became irate and violent, banging her head against the headboard of her bed five times.

He grabbed a gun from a desk drawer and aimed it at her, saying: “I will kill you.” She pushed the gun to the side and the gun went off at the side of the bed.

The woman managed to get the gun away from Balzer and threw it under the bed.

She fled to the home of a neighbour as Balzer began attempting to cover up the bullet hole, according to The Longmont Times-Call.