The wall at exit 10 of Gangnam Station in southern Seoul is covered with memos and flowers left there by citizens, Thursday, in memory of a woman who was murdered in a nearby building, Tuesday. / Korea Times photo by Shin Sang-soon
By Kim Bo-eun
A recent murder has triggered an angry public response, especially from women, after it was alleged that the male suspect killed the victim simply because "she was a woman."
According to police, the suspect surnamed Kim, 34, stabbed the victim, 23, to death at 1 a.m., Tuesday, at a restroom in a building beside Exit 10 of Gangnam Station in southern Seoul. Kim and the victim had never met before.
Kim told police that he committed the murder because he "had often been looked down on by women."
Women are expressing anger about the suspect's stated motive, saying the female victim was killed because the suspect took out his anger on someone weaker than him.
Early on Wednesday, a post appeared on the Twitter account of the user @0517am1, which said "Let's leave a chrysanthemum and post-it at Gangnam Station Exit 10. It is now society's turn to provide an explanation for violence and murders committed against women."
The post was retweeted more than 8,000 times and spread on other social media platforms and online communities.
Since that afternoon, the outer wall of the subway station exit has been covered with post-its remembering the victim.
Online and offline, women are calling for society to recognize that women often become the targets of crimes because they are weaker than men.
"If the man killed any random woman who came to the restroom ― and I could just as well be a random woman ― that means I could be the next target," a female twitter user (@heuiejeong) posted.
"The world keeps telling women about things they should not be doing, such as not being out late at night, not going to dangerous places and not wearing revealing clothes. Now there is another one ― not going to a public restroom past 1 a.m.," another user with the ID 369 posted.
The victim had been drinking with friends at a bar in the building and had gone upstairs to the restroom, when she was stabbed multiple times by the suspect who had allegedly been hiding in the restroom.
Kim, who worked part time at another bar in the building, took a knife from the kitchen to commit the crime.
Police apprehended Kim the following morning on his way to work at the bar, based on footage from a surveillance camera in the building.
According to police, Kim suffers from schizophrenia, for which he has been hospitalized off and on since 2008. He was hospitalized for the last time last August and was discharged in January.
Police said Kim had been off his medication for the last two months since he ran away from home in March.
Kim also previously studied theology and worked for a church, but quit due to problems of adjusting.