October 09, 2015 08:31
Violent crimes against women occur in such a wide variety of locations that it is becoming impossible to call anywhere safe.
The Chosun Ilbo analyzed cases of murder, robbery, rape and abduction from 2013 and found that 45.3 percent of murders and 21.7 percent of rapes occurred in homes, and 18.8 percent of murders and 16.6 percent of rapes in the streets. With robberies more than three out of 10 occurred on the streets.
Kwak Dae-kyung of Dongguk University said, "Crimes often take place on streets with a high concentration of offices that are empty at night."
The Ministry of Public Safety and Security has a map on its website showing relatively safe areas in Seoul, which was based on crime statistics from 2011 to 2014.
Downtown places and parks that are filled with people during the day turn into crime zones at night. Places along the Chonggye Stream are normally safe by day but hotspots for sex crimes between 8 p.m. to 4 a.m.
But few are aware of the fickle nature of certain environments. One woman walking along Cheonggye Stream on a recent evening said she had no idea the area might be dangerous at night. "There are lots of office buildings nearby and police patrol frequently so I didn't think there'd be a problem," she said."
Some experts are calling for an increased police presence and more surveillance cameras but also urge people to use their own judgment and be on their guard.
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