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Drunk driver shot boy he hit, say police

A MAN allegedly shot and killed a 10-year-old boy after hitting him with his car, apparently to hide the fact that he was driving drunk, police in South Korea said yesterday.

The man, only identified by his family name, Lee, struck the boy on June 4 in the southwestern city of Gwangju and took him to a hospital, said officer Kim Sun-gon.

The hospital told him to take the boy to a larger medical facility, but instead he drove the boy to a reservoir near Gwangju, about 345 kilometers southwest of Seoul, and allegedly shot him with an air rifle, Kim said.

Lee at first told police the boy was unconscious after the accident and that he abandoned the body near the reservoir, but he later confessed to the shooting after being confronted with the autopsy report.

Kim quoted Lee as telling investigators he killed the boy "out of fear of getting caught for causing an accident while driving under the influence."

Surveillance video showed Lee and the boy walking in and out of the hospital together, which indicated the boy had a minor injury, Kim said.

Lee, a 48-year-old interior decorator, was arrested on June 10. He could be charged with murder, Kim said.

Lee has a record of drunken driving. His driver's license was revoked for that offense in 2005 and he was caught driving without a license in 2007. That banned him from taking a driver's license test for two years.



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