Sex crimes including street harassment and lewd public behavior may be spreading among teenagers, police said Sunday.
According to the North Chungcheong police agency, 34 of 275 sexual harassment and abuse cases reported during the first half of this year were committed by teenagers. In 2013, a total of 80 sexual crimes committed by teenagers were reported.
Authorities say teenagers tend to overlook the seriousness of sexual crimes, disregarding the degree of punishment to the crime.
In the city of Cheongju, North Chungcheong Province, a female high school student was ambushed by a male student while she was walking around at 9 p.m. The male student then ran away.
“Teenagers think running away without getting caught does not make them offenders. They even proudly brag about it to their friends, but it is clearly a severe sex crime,” police official said.
The police stress that in order to curb sex crimes such as street harassment or lewd public acts victims must immediately report to the police and secure data from CCTVs or automobile black boxes to help identify the offenders.
By Kim Da-sol (firstname.lastname@example.org)