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Govt. responsible for anti-impeachment protestor’s death: court

Supporters of former President Park Geun-hye stage a parade in downtown Seoul in March 2017 in protest against the Constitutional Court`s confirmation of Park’s ouster from the presidential office. (Yonhap)
Supporters of former President Park Geun-hye stage a parade in downtown Seoul in March 2017 in protest against the Constitutional Court`s confirmation of Park’s ouster from the presidential office. (Yonhap)
A local court confirmed Tuesday the government’s responsibility in the death of a protestor during a rally held on the official impeachment day of former President Park Geun-hye.

The Seoul Central District Court ordered the government to pay 31 million won in compensation to the bereaved family, after the deceased man’s son filed a suit against the state and won the initial trial in August last year.

The deceased, who was 72 years old, took part in an anti-impeachment rally in March 2017, which quickly became violent upon the news that the Constitutional Court confirmed Park’s ouster from the presidential office.

Protestors clashed with police and took control of a police vehicle, during which a loud speaker installed atop the bus fell on the protestor, severely injuring his head and chest. He was moved to a nearby hospital and pronounced dead hours later.

The appeals court said the police’s failure to maintain order and losing control of the police bus led to the death of the protestor. But it acknowledged that the protestor failed to be cautious himself, thereby limiting the compensation amount to 20 percent of the 120 million won sought by the son. 

By Ko Jun-tae (ko.juntae@heraldcorp.com)
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