Reports of child abuse made to the police over the past two weeks nearly doubled compared with a year ago amid heightened awareness, the police said Monday.
Police said they had run a Lunar New Year’s security campaign from Feb. 1 through Sunday and that the daily average number of child abuse reports during the period was 47 cases, compared with 24 cases a year ago.
“Child abuse reports rose sharply upon growing awareness,” an official with the National Police Agency said.
In Gumi, North Gyeongsang Province, a 3-year-old girl was found dead in an apartment by a neighbor last week, and police arrested the biological mother of the child on murder charges Sunday.
The mother reportedly told the police she didn’t want to see the child because she had her with her ex-husband, and had left the child alone in the house when she moved out six months ago.
The child was reportedly found in a mummy-like condition.
The mother reportedly continued to collect child care subsidies from the government nevertheless, and lied to her family by leading them to believe she was still living with her daughter.
Police are investigating to determine the cause and timing of the child’s death.
In Iksan, North Jeolla Province, a couple in their 20s were detained for allegedly beating their 2-week-old infant to death.
Reports of other major crimes such as murder, robbery, theft, kidnapping, sexual violence, domestic violence, child abuse and dating violence over the past two weeks dipped 4.1 percent compared with a year ago.
The daily average number of theft reports made to the police by calling the emergency number 112 went down 16 percent on-year, while reports of domestic violence declined by 1.9 percent.
Police said they monitored all 13,046 households considered at risk for repeat domestic violence, and focused on investigating robbery and violence against those in the middle to low income brackets.
As for traffic security, four people died and 391 were injured in car accidents over the past two weeks, down 66.7 percent and 40.9 percent on-year, respectively, as more South Koreans refrained from traveling to their hometowns over the holidays due to COVID-19, police said.
By Kim So-hyun (email@example.com