Photo by Kim Sung-Hee/ Sungshim laid down her body on the roadway then the police soon arrested her, around 3:30 pm, Oct. 30, 2012.


Sungshim, a Jeju native and Catholic follower (Lucia), was arrested around at 3:30pm, Oct 30, 2012 then released on the same day. It is a brief report based on the collected phone talks with her, chairwoman of the Gangjeong Catholic house, Taena’s mom, and Joan. Some of us dropped by her in the Seogwipo medical center around 10 pm on Oct. 30 but could not see her since she was deeply sleeping. Thanks, many people who helped our research on this.

For reference, let us briefly remind you on the situation on Oct. 29. It was around 3:30 pm, Oct. 29 that Sungshim who having climbed up onto the top of construction gate right after a police roughing out and releasing of people, ran down her body in fury from the top to the concrete ground when the navy-contracted company thug ridiculed her rosary prayer. Despite the protest of shocked people who were watching her outside and demanding the company thugs to open the door, the thugs did not open the gate for a while, ignoring people’s appeal and protest for her. The police are also responsible for that accident since they left her alone even though they saw her climbing up to the gate. Sungshim was eventually carried to the Seogwipo Medical center by ambulance after about 30 minutes and as a result of twice x-ray, got the diagnosis of a doctor who said that she has a crack in the hill bone of her right foot and needed more precise medical inspection in the both feet. She was also recommended to be hospitalized. However, Sungshim wanted to return back to the village and stay there while she had bandage in her both feet and crutches. She could not stand that naval base entering into her Island, Jeju, the Peace Island. Around 9:30 pm, she laid herself down on the road in front of the naval base building complex. The police wanted to arrest her but people prevented them to do it and she got consolation from the Catholic sisters later, sitting on a chair, for people’s recommendation. She is told to have slept in front of construction gate at that night.

The next day of Oct. 30, she was doing a prayer in front of construction gate around 3:30pm. The rosary prayer is composed of total five chapters and she was processing chapter 3. She was infuriated that her prayer was interrupted when she was roughed out by the police with her injured feet.

When the police released their roughing out of people for the entry of cement mixer trucks, she crawled and laid her down in the middle of the roadway in protest. Then less than 5 minutes, Ku Seul-Hwan, an infamous Security director of the Seogwipo Police station said to her that the police arrest her under the charge of violation on the law on road traffic. She was stunned that the police who did not take any measure leaving her alone when they saw her crawling toward the center line of the road then arrested her when she laid down her body on it. Later she was also infuriated that she got investigation in an office section in charge of crimes of violence while she was arrested for the charge of violation on road traffic.

When she maintained her right not to speak including her identity during the police investigation, her female investigator told her that, ‘Since you can hear, I suppose you have heard everything,’ and that she would submit file against her to the upper police department. Sungshim made a back talk to her saying, ‘Since you can see, you know I have bandage on and crutch next to my legs.’ The female police investigator could not say anything.

It was around 5:30 pm that the chairwoman of the Gangjeong Catholic House and Taena’s mom visited the Seogwipo Police station to request the police to meet Sungshim. The policewomen rejected them to meet with her without explaining reason but saying, ‘No, without condition.’ When the two waiting women happened to see Sungshim behind an accidentally opened office door, they tried to meet her but the chief of the section in charge of crimes of violence chased away the aged chairwoman. So Taena’s mom protested to the policemen. The two delivered Sungshim and the police words of Fr. Mun who said she should be hospitalized since she is sick. However the police obstinately insisted transference of her to the Dongbu Police Station in the Jeju City.

When Taena’s mom called the hearing inspection office of the Seogwipo Police Station later, delivering situation and appealing to its personnel that Sungshim is sick and need to be hospitalized, the inspection office personnel wanted to talk with a police staff in the investigation room.  When Taena’s mom asked the chief of the section in charge of violent crimes, the chief bluntly replied to her, “Why I have to get call?” So his subsection chief received the phone. And amidst that situation, the police were to forcefully transfer Sungshim to the Dongbu police station so Taena’ mom and Chairwoman of the Catholic house earnestly held them back. Suddenly, the police changed their words that they would ‘release her.’  When Taena’s mom phoned with the hearing auditor again, the auditor said, “You have misunderstood. The police were saying that they would release her but you were mistaken to hear that they would transfer her to the Dongbu police station.’ Taena’ mon was stunned and infuriated by the attitude of the police who distort the facts.

Eventually Sungshim was hospitalized in the Seowgwipo medical center with the agreement of the chief of the investigation support section. The police checked Sungshim’s identification asking a nurse there. What the Seogwipo medical center! The same doctor who has recommended Sungshim to be immediately hospitalized on Oct. 29 said to her that he would hospitalize her ‘since the police allow it.’ Is he saying that she is qualified to be hospitalized since the police corresponded her. Gosh.

Sungshim was eventually being moved to a treatment room around 7pm (No. 219, Seogwipo Medical Center)

The spiritual and physical wound of Sungshim who cannot stand her Island to be a war base! Don’t you feel that the pain and aspiration of the Jeju are condensed there? Don’t you see the anti-historic and anti-human nature of the Island police that oppressed Island people, sided with the US military regime during the 4.3 massacre and uprising on the trace of the Japanese imperialism, in the attitude of the Seogwipo police who trample down the aspiration of the Island people, look down on them, distorting facts and overissueing punishments on them?

Jeong Dawoori and director Cho Sung-Bong thankfully took photographs on her on Oct. 29. Click here for many poignant photos of her on the day. Her desperation to save her Island is remarkable. She has a disease in the thyroid gland. Still she says, “I am OK to die today, only if my Island is saved.”


Photo by Jung Dawoori/ Sungshim on Oct. 29/ For more photos of Oct. 29 and 30 by Jung Dawoori and Cho Sung-Bong, click here


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