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Thursday, October 21, 2021

The Mystery of the Saggy White T-Shirt

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Could we do the same thing as Mr. A and get away with it? Washed evidence, discarded evidence and omitted evidence? Son Jung Min’s father certainly doesn’t think so. Upon reflection of the opinions of the YouTuber community, SJM’s father raised serious doubts on his blog about the ragged condition of Mr. A’s white T-shirt when he exited the Banpo River Park bunny tunnel the morning of April 25, 2021. Moreover, he thinks the SBS television program’s unnecessary re-enactment of the CCTV footage of Mr. A heading through the tunnel not only was designed to create a false narrative for his memory blackout but to also conceal the suspiciously haggard appearance of his clothing and shoes.

He asks what could’ve happened that night to where the shirt was in such a condition where it would be thrown out and never make it onto the list of evidence submitted to the police for investigation. There’s no way we’ll ever know now he says. Additionally, there’s no final police report in existence. Only the mid-investigation police report released to the public months ago has the government’s official assessment.

Specifically in his blog post, Son Jung Min’s father posts segments from the mid-investigation police report. First, he notes that the only articles worn by Mr. A submitted were laundered items including his jacket, backpack, shorts and socks that were in his backpack, not the ones he was actually wearing. Remember, it took about a week for the police to request these items from Mr. A and he only gave a partial list of clothing worn that day. Of critical note? Missing were his shoes, actual worn socks and t-shirt.

Second, the report states the police confirmed that CCTV camera showed a family member and Mr. A’s older sister throwing away his shoes at 2:11 p.m. on April 26, 2021.

Third, test results on May 4, 2021 of Mr. A’s clothes showed no traces of blood or DNA. The report noted that since the clothes and backpack were laundered, it would be hard to find any trace evidence. Plus, why were they only testing for blood? Why not plankton or traces of deep river mud?

In any event, SJM’s father wasn’t having any of it. He said the report just gave the false impression of a lot of investigative work when there was absolutely no mention of the t-shirt. Moreover, even with the mention that the submitted socks were not the ones actually worn by Mr. A on that day, there was no indication that this behavior was out of the ordinary in the report.

So if you ever find yourself on trial in Korea and you’re asked for evidence or if you pay the police enough, you can have them wait before they collect items from you. This will give you enough time to launder items or even buy brand new replacement evidence. Your items will have nothing to do with the case so that it’s clean and clear.

Speaking of trials, Mr. A wasn’t even on trial or under investigation. Nor was his shirt. But the police gave his defense lawyer ample space in THE POLICE REPORT to mount a hefty defense against their accusers, and Son Jung Min’s father, in particular. They said, “The shirt Mr. A was wearing was 2 for $10. It was old and it had some vomit on it so we threw it away. We’ve already explained why we threw away the shoes in our previous statement. There have been many accusations that being from a rich Gangnam family means we throw away shoes and clothes on a whim, but it’s unjust to make assumptions about differences in lifestyle. Jungmin’s family has suspicions because the t-shirt wasn’t submitted. But when we first released our statement, he had only spun his doubts to the media about the shoes. We have no reason to respond to suspicions that haven’t been made.”

SJM’s father says there are numerous inconsistencies and questionable circumstances and yet the police have ferociously parroted the line of “no criminal circumstances present” in this case. In his blog post he reiterates: Why did the family throw away the t-shirt and shoes? Why did the police lose interest in the investigation?

In his closing, SJM’s father said he had a dream. In it, he went all the way to the Supreme Court and got the ruling he hoped for. But since he didn’t have his son by his side, he was sad and then he woke up.

Let’s hope SJM’s dad can make progress on this case and take it to the next level. We really need to answer this question for ourselves and society: had we done what Mr. A had done, would we be in the same place as he is right now?

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