UPDATE #1: The Chosun Ilbo now has article up claiming the soldiers were playing a boombox loudly on the subway and groped the Korean woman who complained. Three of the soldiers were then detained by passengers when they try to leave the subway. A picture of the detained soldiers can be seen below. Like I said before I will let this story play itself out before passing judgment based on the past subway incidents mentioned below. You would think with all the people in the subway car someone would have pulled out their cell phone and filmed what happened?
Via the various reader tips from the Open Thread comes news that six USFK soldiers are accused of sexually harassing a 20-year old Korean woman on the subway:
Three U.S. soldiers have been caught for alleged sexual harassment of a South Korean woman on a subway train and three others are being sought for their involvement, Yonhap quoted police as saying Sunday.
The half-dozen American soldiers, whose identities have been withheld, are accused of harassing a 20-year-old South Korean woman around 9:16 p.m. on Saturday on a train on the subway line No. 1.
Police said the soldiers danced to loud music on the train, and the woman asked them to be quiet. The soldiers then started harassing her while filming their act at the same time.
Police said they detained three of the soldiers and turned them over to the U.S. military police, while three others, who fled the scene, remain at large. [Sina News]
Considering how past US soldiers have been accused of crimes on the subway in the past that proved to be false everyone should keep some skepticism on whether this is a sexual harassment case or not. See the below links for examples:
Since the soldiers were on subway Line 1, they are likely 2nd Infantry Division soldiers heading back to their camps after partying in Seoul. The rowdy behavior described in the article is something I find highly believable since that is behavior I have seen soldiers do before on the subway. Here is a past example of such behavior. To be fair I have also encountered rowdy behavior from Korean passengers as well and Koreans have done far worse things on the subway than a US soldier ever has. However, US soldiers are definitely more noticeable just by the fact they stand out so much due to being foreigners on the subway. I have personally corrected soldiers on the subway before and usually once somebody in a position of leadership points out their rude behavior they settle down.
Considering the amount of courtesy patrols wandering around the villes in Korea how long before someone gets the idea USFK needs courtesy patrols on subway Line 1 as well?