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Disabled athlete found burning in open field: police

Police are investigating the death of a 24-year-old disabled person who was found engulfed in flames Monday in an open field in Cheongju, North Chungcheong Province.

According to authorities, a passerby called dispatch around 7:30 p.m. Monday to report a “person on fire” near an open field in Heungduk-gu, northwestern Cheongju. 


Police and fire investigators said the subject was declared dead at the scene. The victim was identified as a 24-year-old athlete with an intellectual disability.

Circumstantial evidence found at the scene indicates the deceased victim may have died by suicide, police said.

Authorities said they will further investigate the death as a suicide rather than a potential homicide based on initial evidence.

By Catherine Chung (