Wife says deranged policeman was 'hard to please'

SEOUL, South Korea -- The policeman who slaughtered 56 people in a crazed rampage before blowing himself up with grenade 'was a heavy drinker and he was hard to please,' his common-law wife said.

Chun Mal-soon was recovering from a bullet wound in a Seoul hospital today only hours after an argument with her husband, Woo Bum-kon, triggered his eight-hour killing spree through five South Korean villages.


Speaking in a hoarse voice after a seven hour operation, Ms. Chun said her policeman husband's problems stemmed from her family's objections to their living together without being married.

'He was a heavy drinker, and he was hard to please,' she added.

Police said there was a violent argument between Woo and Miss Chun after she swatted a fly on his chest as he slept.

He awoke in a rage and stormed out, returning a few hours later drunk on whiskey, police said. They quarreled again. Woo struck her, left the house again, and drank some more, police said.

Then, Woo went to his police station and offered to relieve the officer on duty in order to gain access to the armory.

Armed with two carbines and 180 rounds of ammunition, Woo killed killed 56 civilians on the streets, in their homes and shops before blowing himself up with a hand grenade.


Villagers said Woo told them during his rampage that an operation was under way against suspected Communist infiltrators. Dressed in his police uniform, he managed for eight hours to elude police sent to shoot him on sight.

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