Suspect says he stabbed his neighbors for being loud

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Suspect says he stabbed his neighbors for being loud

The 34-year-old man suspected of having stabbed a senior couple that lived upstairs from him in in Hanam, Gyeonggi, for ignoring his requests to quiet down was caught by the police at a sauna in Incheon, Hanam Police said on Monday.

The suspect is accused of having planned the crime in advance, as he allegedly had a knife with him, which was purchased one month ago, when he visited the elderly couple at about 5:50 p.m. on Saturday. The suspect had also allegedly installed a video camera in front of the victim’s home in order to find out the door passcode.

Although the husband, 68, and the wife, 67, were both stabbed, the wife died after being transferred to a hospital while the husband is in stable condition, police have announced.

“I remember having locked the door,” testified the husband. “I don’t know how he managed to open it.”

“I faced difficulties in my daily life because of the loud noise coming from upstairs,” the suspect later testified to police. “I personally went upstairs twice in March and told them to be quiet, but they kept making noise. I just got more and more stressed out as the days went by, and that’s why I did what I did.”

After the crime, police said, the suspect fled to his house, changed his clothes and took a bus to a convenience store in Gangdong District, eastern Seoul, to withdraw cash from an ATM. Police say he then took the subway to Incheon Station, the last station on subway line number one.

On the day of the stabbing, the suspect reportedly stayed the night in a sauna in Incheon and roamed the city on foot the next day, barely using public transportation at all. Police say he returned to the sauna late that afternoon and was caught by police some 29 hours after the crime took place.

In his interview with the police, the suspect said, “I complained to the security guard about the noise, but they just said ‘Okay’ and didn’t bother to do anything about it.”

Police also say he was upset with the couple for “looking down on him.”

The victims were living with their younger son and his wife, but they were out when the attack took place. The elder son, his wife and children often visited the couple on weekends, which supposedly caused the noise that the suspect complained about.

Police will request an arrest warrant immediately after their investigation is complete.


BY KIM MIN-WOOK [shin.sooyeon@joongang.co.kr]

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