Prime Minister Han Duck-soo said Wednesday the government will restructure police forces with a focus on preventing heinous crimes targeting random people and consider reviving the system of allowing conscripts to serve in police forces instead of military service.
Han made the remark in a special statement in the wake of shocking crimes against random people, including last week's rape and murder of a woman on a hiking trail in broad daylight. The incident followed back-to-back stabbing sprees that left a total of two people dead and 16 others wounded.
"Crimes of this nature, targeting innocent citizens, are a grave concern that disrupts our society's fundamental values and order," Han said in a statement.
Han said the government will restructure police forces with a focus on maintaining public order as their top priority. Additionally, the government will consider reviving the system of conscripted police personnel to beef up police forces.
Fear of random crime has grown as copycat crime threats have been posted online, prompting law enforcement to intensify street patrols and stop-and-search operations for individuals exhibiting suspicious behavior.
"The government is treating this situation with the utmost seriousness," Han said, noting the ongoing special patrols will continue.
Han also said the government would provide support for victims of random crimes, including the establishment of a "one-stop" support facility that offers various forms of legal, financial and welfare assistance.
On Tuesday, the government and the ruling People Power Party reached an agreement to enhance support for victims, potentially including financial aid to cover all associated treatment costs.
Source: Yonhap News Agency