Gwangju Bukbu Police Station said the four men in their late teens were sent to the prosecution this morning with charges of murder regarding the death of their 18-year-old roommate.
On June 9, the four teenagers took turns in hitting and kicking the victim for about two hours. They conducted CPR when he stopped breathing. The suspects then fled the scene, before turning them themselves into police two days later.
The suspects and victim met at a vocational school and had been living together in a single-room home in Gwangju since April. An investigation showed the suspects had mistreated the victim prior to his death, forcing him to do all the house chores, taking his money and constantly abusing him.
Police charged the suspects with murder, since the teenagers had been aware their actions could lead to fatal damage to the victim. One of the suspects had told police that he had thought that the victim might actually die from the beating while they administered it.
An autopsy of the body revealed the victim had died from multiple injuries caused during the assault. The body was covered in bruises and a rib was broken.
An online petition filed on June 12 by a friend of the victim’s family -- pleading for a thorough investigation and strict punishment -- amassed more than 30,000 virtual signatures in a week.
By Choi Ji-won (firstname.lastname@example.org)