ROK Drop

Avatar of GI KoreaBy on June 24th, 2013 at 6:17 pm

Soldier Involved In Uijongbu Subway Harassment Case Wants A Trial

Sounds like this private has been listening to the barrack lawyers:

One of six U.S. soldiers accused of harassing a Korean woman on a subway train earlier this year has requested a formal trial.

Pvt. Damian Roedl, 20, was fined the equivalent of almost $1,000 by summary order for “insult/indecent act by compulsion/assault,” according to the 2nd Infantry Division. But he believes he is not guilty and the fine is too large, a Uijeongbu District Court official said. His case is scheduled to be heard Aug. 19.  [Stars & Stripes]


You can read more at the link but this guy should be happy with receiving roughly a $1,000 fine.   Like I figured this case would turn out, the authorities did not have evidence to back up the initial claims that the soldiers surrounded this woman and molested her on the subway.  So they wait a while, let the Korean media cycle pass, and then hit them with a lesser charge and fine.  By asking for a trial this soldier could cause this incident to regain Korean media attention.  In most cases going to trial in South Korea is just a determination of how guilty you are, not whether you are innocent or not as he is likely thinking.

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  • William
    7:34 pm on June 24th, 2013 1

    This will ensure he stays in Korea for a couple weeks moar.

  • Jinro Dukkohbi
    7:40 pm on June 24th, 2013 2

    Yeah – this dude will be the next Andre Fisher…whata moron… :roll:

  • TXL8R
    8:07 pm on June 24th, 2013 3

    were you there? hello? any eye witness account, WILLIAM?

    Maybe, just maybe, this soldier was not as aggressive or maybe he tried to back off a little bit, or maybe WHO KNOWS?

    You really need to chill your guiltlust – it unbecomes a fairminded observer, and smacks of prejudice aforethought.

    Give this soldier his day in court. You would expect no less for yourself, I assume.

  • Smokes
    8:16 pm on June 24th, 2013 4

    #3: I’m with you on withholding judgement due to lack of information but unfortunately GI’s probably going to be proven right on this that it’s a bad move. Given the way the system works here I’d not try to press it in court.

  • Baek, In-je
    8:21 pm on June 24th, 2013 5

    I have a new post on my site.
    If you get into an argument like the one on the subway, start punching and run away as a group. Hell, these guys are in a forward position in Korea and they cant get away from ajosshi?

  • Jinro Dukkohbi
    8:26 pm on June 24th, 2013 6

    #3 – unless you are new to this blog and oblivious to living in Korea in general, you would already know that there is no ‘day in court’ for foreigners/GIs. Unless you follow the playbook, you’ll get hammered, ‘ala Andre Fisher

    Guilt or innocence don’t really matter once it gets to the point where they’re asking for a (little bit) of money vs. the trial. This will go badly, for sure…

  • DMZDave
    8:34 pm on June 24th, 2013 7

    I’ve told this story before on this site but having stopped to render assistance at an accident site only to be later falsely accused of causing the accident by a host of lying Korean bystanders who swore Ithey had observed me run over two little girls, I have learned to be very skeptical of Kirean eye witness accounts. The facts were I saw the accident and responded but the police asked “if you weren’t responsible, why would you stop?” Because it’s American culture to do so (see Korean War) I will withhold judgment as well on this case. The young soldier may well be asking for a ttrial because he knows he didn’t do anything wrong and if that is the case, good for him.

  • G.I. G.I. Joe
    9:53 pm on June 24th, 2013 8

    I remember reading your story, and I still get chills.

    The lesson is that Koreans believe that in a dispute between a foreigner and fellow Korean that by their culture and sense of loyalty that it is their duty to support their fellow Korean to make certain that their countryman, friend, or family member gets as much as possible.

    I made the mistake of making a sacrifice of my family and self for the greater good, and I will never do that again in Korea. Koreans will sacrifice duty, ethics, morals, and professional responsibility egregiously for a small gain for themselves or their relationship. I realize that it’s a broad generalization, but it’s Korean culture.

    What’s worse is that you can’t even call them out on it because they have a constitutional right to reputation, even false reputation.

  • Flunky Brewster
    2:17 am on June 25th, 2013 9

    Someone is giving him bad advice.

  • Avatar of GI KoreaGI Korea
    4:05 am on June 25th, 2013 10

    Here is the link to the story that DMZDave told before that I recommend everyone read if you haven’t already. The GI in question may have very well not have said a word to the woman on the subway and simply got rolled up into whatever confrontation happened with the other soldiers. However, judging by the ROK Criminal Prosecution results I regularly publish here it is an extremely rare event to see a GI found innocent in a Korean court. I would be very surprised to see that happen and by going to court he may open himself to a larger fine than what he already received.

  • Baek, In-je
    5:18 am on June 25th, 2013 11

    DMZ Dave and GI GI Joe are good Americans and good and kind-hearted people. The world needs more of these people. The problem is, Koreans like this do not exist in Korea. They will NEVER stop to help like DMZ Dave did. They lack empathy for others. Most Koreans love their schadenfreude (pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others). They love that. Those Koreans, as the police vocalized, had no possible way to fathom why someone would stop to help seriously injured children if they had not been at fault. That’s:
    1. Not Christian
    2. Cold blooded
    3. Not human
    4. Antithetic to everything we, as good Americans, know and believe about basic compassion for human life.
    If it is one thing it is a lack of basic respect for human life that permeates throughout the Korean “people.”

    I know I talk a lot of sh!t. But I am not a troll. I am just a guy who spent almost 20 years in Korea, and I understand every little dirty, very very dirty, little secret that the Koreans have. I will expose this on my blog and in comments whenever I can.

    As for the private: pay the money. You didn’t learn your lesson yet? I am just assuming that these guys would have been told certain scenarios similar to this and how they will get screwed if they got involved with Koreans itching for a fight with soldiers.

  • John in NY
    6:21 am on June 25th, 2013 12

    I hope he doesn’t get jail time like our good old friend Andre Fisher.

  • TXL8R
    7:14 am on June 25th, 2013 13

    I was referring to William’s blatant sarcasm about getting a few more weeks in Korea if Roedl took his case to trial. I think William somehow expects this legal choice to get Roedl nothing but extra calendar days, and not anything near justice if Roedl were to be found not guilty. I called him out for jumping to judgment, and at least one, maybe two other posters agreed with this.

    I reviewed your link and found the overwhelming majority of comments to be deriding of Andre Fisher’s misleading comments and his family’s equally deliberate obfuscation and false accusations. So, this is your case ‘celebre’ to convince me that the Korean justice system is never fair? You show me a link on a popular Korean blog website that turns out to be riddled with well-written comments about the dishonest and deliberately fabricated actions of the U.S. soldier defendant and his family? You showed me quite the opposite of Korean injustice. Let’s have a look at your equally condescending and arrogant quip in comment #2. You must know Roedl, perhaps? Is that why, IYO, he becomes another U.S. victim of Korean injustice, because he fabricates his story, gets his parents and other ne’er-do-wells to jump on his sympathy bandwagon, and then gets a fair sentence slapped on him when he was hoping, begging, praying for a dismissal, all the way to the Korean Supreme Court? You don’t know jack in this case, so why don’t you pack it in and be quiet until the case is tried? You’ve already proven that you can’t even understand criminal behavior based on your understanding of Andre Fisher’s sentencing. Let’s hope Roedl does NOT play the Andre Fisher game and try and pull a fast one the Korean court. If he does, then let’s hope he gets Korean justice, just like Andre Fisher did.

    I do in fact understand the small odds of reversal that Roedl is facing. And your referral to the statistical proof that such reversals are rare if ever is enough for me to believe that he is not likely to prevail. I am inclined to think that he must have been advised to go for a trial because of his actions not being as blatant, severe, or even criminal. But I am not a lawyer, and I am only making an assumption based on what I have read in articles. Roedl got half the amount of fine that PFC Goodman received for the same charge, so maybe there is some basis in his trying for a trial. Like FB said in post #9, maybe he got some bad advice from a Korean ambulance chaser. After all, lawyers are shysters and play the innocent (as in innocent of the ways of courtroom maneuvering) for as much $$ as possible in America, why would they be any different in Korea?

  • Chimo
    12:28 pm on June 25th, 2013 14

    Commentary on this article seems pretty spot on. Play stupid games, win stupid prizes. But if the one guy out of the group really did not participate in this incident to the extent that he should be charged and fined, I really do hope that the Korean judicial system will be able to figure that out. But I have my doubts.

  • Chimo
    12:33 pm on June 25th, 2013 15

    @DMZDave #7

    Sadly, I can see Koreans pulling something like that. Partly of malicious intent, and partly out of guilt. They probably saw you as someone to shift blame on (someone needs to be blamed when kids are hurt) and saw you as an easy target (being a foreigner). Maybe they thought you’d panic and offer $ for some settlement. Really regretful that it had to happen in a situation where you were being a good samaritan.. events like that deeply impact how you view a culture. May I ask how it turned out in the end?

  • Chimo
    12:45 pm on June 25th, 2013 16

    @Baek #11

    If you spent almost 20 years in the country and that’s all you have to say about its people, then either you have a narrow mind, or you’ve wasted an immense amount of time in a sh*thole. I’ve had my fair share of rage moments against Koreans the short time that I was there, but those events never influenced me to the point where I am putting the entire country down every chance I get.

    And do you think those characteristics you mention are exclusive to Koreans? Have you ever been outside of Seoul, where the pace is a bit slower and people are more relaxed? Have you seen what Americans are like in New York City or any other metropolitan area for that matter? Try living 20 years in NYC and let’s see the things you have to say about New Yorkers. My point is that people act in a similar manner (given they’re in similar environments: democratic, capitalistic, fast-paced, etc). For you to comment on all Koreans based on your experience there says more about you than it does about Koreans. And trust me, people can see that.

  • William
    7:28 pm on June 25th, 2013 17

    When I said a few weeks extra, I was meaning that it usually takes a few weeks to get a trial setup.

    YES, I was being sarcastic, thank you.

    NO, I was saying nothing about guilt.

    Maybe If I said something to the effect of “That will ensure hiz criminal Azz will stay on the Penn for a little moar” then that would logically be interpreted as prejudging him.

    Trials take a little time to setup and Soldiers are usually assigned to Korea for not so long. we all know that. I was making fun of that.

  • TXL8R
    7:45 pm on June 25th, 2013 18

    Appreciate the clarification

  • Baek, In-je
    8:45 pm on June 25th, 2013 19

    People know that I tell the truth about Koreans in the most acerbic way possible. I don’t lie. Sure problem X happens in country Y as well….so what’s your point. You have no point. You whine like a little bitchh, when you should be out looking for a girlfriend you mateless gimp. I have a lot of things to say about Koreans, and not all of it is bad. Ok, most. ^^ Now go ride your bike around the apartment car park.

  • Chimo
    7:01 am on June 26th, 2013 20

    @Baek #19

    You mush feel pretty bitter about having wasted away so much of your life with these miserable people you detest. My point was that your observations are not limited to just the korean people, and for you to focus your attacks on their culture as if those characteristics are exclusive to them, it reveals much more about what limited existence you’ve lived. Get my point now?

    And I’m not the one whining here. I’m not going on online forums talking about what miserable experience I’ve had for 20 years of my life. I’m quite happy and proud of the societies I’ve come across, despite the many faults I’ve seen. So take your insults and reflect on your own self with it.

  • Baek, In-je
    1:17 pm on June 26th, 2013 21

    Most of that twenty years was a blast, man. I was young, good looking, worked out, was popular with the ladies (Mostly in the 7 to 9 range), and made a lot of money at the same time. Wins all across the board. But know this you apologist troll, every single day of every single month of every single year of both decades I had to endure all the truly worst aspects of Korean culture. There were mostly really really good times, but the behavior and please understand my culture of the indigenous people of the Land of the Moaning Clam wears away at you like Chinese Water torture. There are great aspects of the Korean culture, but they are covered up similar to a delicious dish slathered in red pepper paste, changing the original flavor unnecessarily.

  • Chimo
    9:31 am on June 27th, 2013 22

    @Baek #21

    In what ways am I an apologist troll?

    Sounds like you got to experience both the goods and the bads of the Korean society. Why the change in tone now? It was only a little while ago that you were bashing the korean people as juvenile, petty, undeserving.. etc. You keep mentioning “your” culture. What exactly is your culture? Do you believe “your” culture is superior to that of the Koreans?

    Obviously you have a large amount of grievance against the Korean people, so let’s see you explain yourself and defend your position. Prove that you’re not a troll by first explaining “your” culture which is the criteria you’ve been measuring these koreans against.

  • Baek, In-je
    12:34 pm on June 27th, 2013 23

    In America, most people treat others in public with some respect. This is the way the vast majority of the US population behaves. We dont have people pushing, shoving, elbowing, running for open seats of the subway to sit ahead of someone else, screaming by grown damn adults everywhere, etc…ad nauseum ad infinitum. This is the way most civilized people in civilized countries behave. Sure there are some people who are rude everywhere they go (similar to standard operating procedure in Korea), but they are the exception.
    In Korea, most Koreans treat everyone they know as if they did not exist. There is a saying in Korea that if you do not know someone, they do not exist to you, and you need not show them any common courtesy. Koreans will tell you this.
    Living in Korea is like living with small children: they scream everywhere, misbehave, spit, oh, the list is endless.

    My slogan for South Korea:

    Korea: Twice the Pride, Half the Dignity.

  • Chimo
    2:44 pm on June 29th, 2013 24

    @Baek #23

    If your perceived lack of social etiquette is all you have in basing your negative views of the Koreans, then I’m going to go ahead and call you a tool. If you have anything else to say, I’d be glad to hear about them.

    You clearly lack a wider world view and it’s not even worth my time to adress them.


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