- The Washington Times - Monday, July 27, 2015

A Northern Virginia man accused of fatally stabbing a South Korean missionary and seriously injuring the man’s wife at a religious retreat facility in Frederick, Maryland, Sunday night told police he lashed out because he was tired of being treated badly by Koreans.

Song Su Kim, 30, of Falls Church, was charged with first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder in the “very bloody, brutal” attack at the Anna Prayer Counseling Center, said Frederick County Sheriff Chuck Jenkins.

Mr. Kim told investigators that he attacked the 63-year-old Chung Hwan Park — stabbing him 11 times — because the missionary had treated him badly that day, according to court records filed in the case. Mr. Kim, an American citizen of Korean descent, made additional comments that he wanted to “invade a Korean” because of the way he had been disrespected in the past.

Officials said Mr. Kim was homeless and had been dropped off at the rural facility five days earlier by his mother. Mr. Park and his wife, 58-year-old Ae Suk Ko, were visiting the center from South Korea as part of a religious retreat and were volunteering as cooks there.

Trouble seemed to be brewing since Saturday, when Mr. Kim called 911 to complain about the food at the center, located near Sugarloaf Mountain, a popular hiking destination.

While odd, the call didn’t raise the alarm for the deputies who responded.

“He indicated to the deputies that responded that he was really unsatisfied with the food at the facility,” Sheriff Jenkins said. “That was it. There was nothing that indicated there were any problems there or with the individual.”

Online listings describe the Anna Prayer Counseling Center as available for retreats and events. Most of those affiliated with the center are of Korean descent, Sheriff Jenkins said.

Sunday’s attack came as a small group of people, including the victims, were preparing for a prayer service around 7:45 p.m. Two women who witnessed the attack said the group was waiting for Mr. Kim to finish his dinner before beginning. They said he entered the meeting room from an adjacent kitchen with his hands behind his back. When asked to sit down, he revealed a kitchen knife in hand and began slashing at Mr. Park, the witnesses said.

Mrs. Ko was stabbed four times after she came to her husband’s defense. Mr. Park, who suffered stab wounds to his upper body and neck, died at the scene, but his wife was taken to a hospital and was listed in serious but stable condition on Monday.

Mr. Kim was taken into custody on the road near the center after calling 911 following the stabbings. According to court documents, when Mr. Kim was asked over the phone by a 911 dispatcher if he was OK, he replied, “Excuse me sir? I just stabbed two people. I did it myself.”

Mr. Kim was ordered held without bond at a hearing Monday in Frederick County District Court.

Deputy State’s Attorney Nanci Hamm told The Associated Press that Mr. Kim has an arrest record in Virginia for a 2012 assault on a family member; a 2006 malicious destruction of property charge; and a drunken driving charge in 2005. Virginia court records list a number of criminal charges against Mr. Kim, including speeding, drunken driving, and assault.

It was unclear how long the victims had been in the country at the retreat center, or why Mr. Kim had been brought there by his family. No one could be reached at a phone number for the center Monday.

Sheriff Jenkins said the victims had been in the country on a visa for a short stay and that officials were working with the South Korean Embassy to notify family members.

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