A stepmother who beat her teenage daughter to death was subjected to a heavy penalty. This marks the first precedent of the so-called “Jeong-in Law,” the revised act on child abuse and murder that was enacted in March last year
The First Criminal Office at Changwon District Court Jinju Branch sentenced the 41-year-old stepmom to 30 years in prison for violation of the child abuse law and on charges of child abuse and murder. The charge of child abuse and murder, which was applied to her, is heavier than the existing law as it carries death sentence, life sentence, and seven years or more in prison.
The woman in question beat her 13-year-old stepdaughter for two hours and left her to die at home in Namhae County, South Gyeongsang Province, on June 22, 2021. She was going through a divorce and beat the daughter to death because her husband did not pick up the phone. It was revealed that she had abused her daughter many times from August 2020 to June 2021.
“It is a grave crime for parents to abuse and use violence on their children who are physically and mentally vulnerable,” the judge said. “The nature of crime is deemed to be very bad considering the victim who never received the love she deserved as a young kid but ended up dying in so much pain.” The members of the Korea Association for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect visited the court and resisted the ruling, arguing that the penalty is too lenient.