UPDATE: Video of the incident is beginning to come out which can be seen on this MBC report uploaded on YouTube:
Also I recommend going over to the Marmot’s Hole which also has a lot of information posted on this story. It is still unclear what these idiots were doing with the pellet guns, but it is basically irrelevant because they should have stopped when confronted by the police. If they would stopped they would have had their ass chewed by their leadership and this whole incident would just have been remembered as much as the past Itaewon toy gun incident. Now it is a full fledged international incident. Something else of interest is that the Staff Sergeant had his wife with him in the car which just shows stupidity can be a family affair.
It is also becoming pretty clear that the GIs after being cornered tried to run over the policeman who stepped out of the taxicab to stop them in eastern Seoul. With a car trying to run him down I think the policeman was completely justified with shooting at the driver. Reports say he was shot in the shoulder, but considering he tried to run over a policeman he is lucky he didn’t get shot in the face. Unbelievably when they returned to Yongsan they tried to blame the driver getting shot on a Arab that tried to rob them. Considering how stupid these three were to begin with, it figures they would think that USFK authorities would buy such a story.
I think most importantly it shows the extreme disconnect between some USFK servicemembers and life in Korea. Obviously these three felt like they could do whatever they were doing with the pellet guns and then run from police without being caught and it making headlines in Korea. These idiots even thought being shot by the police would not make headlines that would reach back to Yongsan Garrison authorities considering the “Arab shot me” story they made up. It is pretty clear that their unit on Yongsan Garrison is not briefing these soldiers that the littlest incident will make headlines and that the Korean police will catch you considering the amount of cameras and witnesses available to identify you. That is why it is always best to just cooperate with police and take your lumps instead of escalating the situation to where it becomes a full fledged international incident.
USFK units should as part of their weekly safety briefs read off every incident that happens and then post it on the unit bulletin board for servicemembers to read. Most servicemembers will read it and think that will never happen to me and it likely won’t, but the few idiots out there who think they can cause trouble and get away with it because they are in Korea may think twice before doing something stupid if they read about other GIs who were arrested for the same stupid crap they are thinking of doing.
Just when you thought you had seen it all in regards to GI stupidity, the Itaewon Pellet Gun Bandits come along:
SEOUL — A U.S. soldier was in stable condition Sunday after police shot him during an early-morning car chase that South Korean officials say started after they received emergency calls about gunshots being fired near a busy Itaewon intersection.
Details remained sketchy several hours later, including whether the soldier had fired BBs or pellets at bystanders in front of the Hamilton Hotel or might have just pointed a toy gun at them.
South Korean police said they received emergency calls at 11:53 p.m. Saturday about shots being fired by a soldier, according to an official with the Yongsan Police Station’s Fifth Violent Crimes Team. Police tried to capture him at the nearby Itaewon subway station, but he and a second soldier escaped by car.
Police followed the two soldiers by taxi for about half an hour to the Gwangjin district in eastern Seoul. During the chase, police fired one blank warning shot and three live rounds, hitting the driver. He was described as the shooter, with differing accounts saying he used a BB or pellet gun. One South Korean police officer described the weapon as a “toy gun.”
It was not immediately clear whether police knew if a real or fake gun was involved, and whether South Korean police followed proper procedure by shooting at the servicemembers. Another Yongsan police official said police fired shots because they believed the car posed a threat to them. [Stars & Stripes]
You can read much more at the link.
To begin with it is not wise to brandish even a toy gun much less fire pellets (if they in fact did fire pellets) at people in Korea. Could these soldiers have been doing what these prior idiots arrested in Itaewon in December 2011 were doing? If so they should have just stopped and complied with the Korea police when confronted. This largely would have been a minor story. Now do the car chase and subsequent shooting this is a full fledge international incident that the anti-US Chinboista leftists can use to bash not only USFK, but the new Korean President Park Geun-hye with. They will do this by repeating the same old untrue SOFA claims over and over again though these soldiers will be handed over to police, questioned, and tried in a Korean court.
With that all said I cannot understand why the Korean police would shoot at their car? This is very unusual behavior by the police, especially when they had the suspects license plate number and even though they did not catch them were able to later identify them. The risk to civilians with police wildly shooting out of a moving vehicle at another moving vehicle makes the decision to shoot seem quite poor in my opinion. Also are the police in Korea authorized to use taxis to chase suspects? How would the suspects in the car know they are being chased by police when they are in a taxi cab? Especially when the taxi cab is shooting at them which is not behavior consistent with Korean policing? For all we know maybe they thought they pissed off some Korean gangsters with their stupidity in Itaewon and were being chased by them?The bottom line though is that the police chase and subsequent shooting should have never happened in the first place if these idiots were first not acting like fools in Itaewon and secondly complied with Korean police when confronted at the Itaewon Subway Station. It is even more pathetic to see that a Staff Sergeant was involved in this stupidity.