A man known as Mr. Kim visited BIGBANG Seungri‘s club, called Burning Sun, as a customer when he was repeatedly beaten by the club’s CEO, Mr. Jang, and his friends.
Mr. Kim revealed an in depth recount of his story in a petition to the Blue House, where he claimed that the policemen assaulted him multiple times, which caused extreme injury to his face.
MBC News collected the CCTV footages available to note that Mr. Kim was only hit directly in the face once by Mr. Kim. As Mr. Kim was being arrested by the police, the policemen seemed to use unnecessary force as three officers got on top of Mr. Kim when he fell onto the ground.
The police were accused of tampering with evidence to cover up their brutality when CCTV footage showed one of the policemen cleaning up traces of blood left behind by Mr. Kim, who was dragged into the station while bleeding.
As Mr. Kim wasn’t bleeding before he left for the station, many wondered why he was bleeding when he arrived. Mr. Kim claimed that the policemen who arrested him, repeatedly assaulted and kicked him on their way into the station.
“As we were walking up the steps, the policeman tripped me and pushed me from behind. Since my hands were cuffed behind my back, I fell and scraped my face.
He kicked me repeatedly and I ended up near the glass doors. There’s a thick stainless steel frame at the bottom of the door. As I was getting kicked, my face collided with the stainless steel. That’s when my nose started bleeding. Blood came spurting out of my nose.”
— Mr. Kim
Video from inside the station showed Mr. Kim being dragged into the station by two policemen, while he bled on the floor and struggled to stand.
Mr. Jang, who had first assaulted Mr. Kim, even explained that he was confused as to why Mr. Kim was bleeding when he saw him again at the police station later on. Mr. Jang recalled that Mr. Kim’s face didn’t have any injury when he was being arrested.
“I was surprised to see Mr. Kim bleeding when I went to the police station.
At the time of the scene, he didn’t have any injuries to his face. It didn’t make sense that he was bleeding at the station.”
— Mr. Jang
When questioned about the unexplained injury, the police claimed that Mr. Kim tripped and fell on his own while walking up the steps to the station. The police initially claimed that there was no clear evidence that police brutality was the cause.
“Mr. Kim tripped and fell on his own while coming up the steps, and his nose bled. We did not assault him as he claims we did.
We rewatched and studied the video footages over and over again. We could not find sustainable evidence that our policemen assaulted him.”
— Representative of the Yeoksam Police Station
Mr. Kim continued to accuse the policemen of attacking him since the moment of his arrest. He demanded that the police car’s blackbox be released to the public as proof. The police first denied the request, claiming it was a matter of protecting one’s privacy.
Unable to standby, Mr. Kim hired a lawyer to get the court involved in releasing the videos. When the court demanded that the police release the video, the police sent in a file that had been tampered with.
The footage sent had horrible quality and seemed to cut off in the middle. The video stops in between as the wipers’ sudden change of speed showed that there was a piece of file missing. The video was only 2.5 minutes long, when the whole ride from the club to the station takes about 6 minutes.
MBC News was able to get their hands on the original file from the blackbox. The original file had a much better quality and showed the policemen clearly assaulting Mr. Kim.
Mr. Kim was struggling to breathe properly after fracturing his ribs, but the policemen grabbed him by his hair to squish him into the car, got on top of him, crushing him with their full weight, and even smashed his head to the chair with incredible force.
Mr. Kim claims that there were more beatings, especially as soon as they got into the car. However, the blackbox did not record the first 50 seconds of the car ride. The police representative stumbled upon his words as he explained that it was normal for the blackbox to reboot as soon as the ignition starts.
“When you turn on the ignition, the blackbox reboots itself. The reboot takes about 25 seconds – I mean, about 51 seconds.”
— Representative of the Yeoksam Police Station
Lastly, there are 4 CCTVs located in the Yeoksam Police Station. When the court demanded that they release all four recorded footages, the police only gave them one. They explained that two of the four CCTVs were fake as the cords have been disconnected since a construction work 3 years ago. The fourth one had apparently not recorded much of Mr. Kim, so they felt it was unnecessary to hand in the footage.
But the Secretary General of Human Rights Solidarity seems to call foul play as it would make no sense for a police station in one of the finest areas of Seoul would turn off their CCTVs for 3 years.
“In regards to CCTVs, the Yeoksam police station has the most advanced and precise technology. But for them to claim that they left it disconnected since 2016 because of construction 3 years ago? How can anyone believe that?”
— Secretary General of Human Rights Solidarity
Mr. Kim has officially sued the Yeoksam Police Station, and the case is currently being investigated.