Back at the end of April, it was revealed that Osshun Gum was the rapper who was accused of child molestation. At the time he reportedly admitted to the crime to police, and then later issued a public apology for it.
Today, he was sentenced to three years probation (18 months sentence if violated), mental health treatment for two years, going through a sexual violence program, and employment restrictions around youth.
On June 22, the Jeonju 1st Criminal Division of the Jeonju District Court sentenced Choi Ha Min (age 23), who was charged with violating the Act on Special Cases concerning the Punishment of Sexual Violence Crimes (forced molestation of minors under 13 years of age), a suspended sentence of 1 year and six months in prison and a 3-year probation.
Along with the probation, Choi Ha Min has been ordered to receive treatment for mental illness for two years, completion of a 40-hour sexual violence treatment program, and restrictions on employment at a child and youth-related organizations and welfare facilities for the disabled for three years.
The court explained their ruling, saying that Osshun Gum is reflecting and was suffering from mental illness at the time, adding that he committed the crime accidentally. He is also under investigation for drug abuse.
The court stated, “The defendant touched the buttocks of a child who was walking with his parents. Given that an agreement has not been reached with the victim to this day, severe punishment is inevitable.” They added, “However, the sentence was decided in consideration of the fact that the accused is reflecting on all his crimes. And the accused was in a mentally and physically weak state with bipolar disorder and committed the crime accidentally.”
I’ve always said this as somebody who has gone through mental health problems himself, that while mental health issues may give context to wrongs being done and can help our understanding of actions, they aren’t an excuse for what happens to the people you hurt, in this case a young boy and his family who have still not forgiven him. That part is what concerns me most, and I hope that kid is alright in the end.
While I agree that I’m not sure prison will necessarily help rehabilitate him any, I’m skeptical anything else being provided through this sentence will either given concerns that have been expressed about Korea’s mental health care. His lawyer did say he already spent 70 days in a psychiatric hospital to get better, so I am hoping for the best, but it’s hard not to understand those who have concerns about essentially just releasing a man who was convicted of child molestation. And yes, it is … something that at least the probation part is similar to weed sentences.