Man in bunny ears blamed for Halloween stampede in Seoul

Photo by Rachel Clarke via Flickr and Chosun

Survivors from the tragic Halloween stampede in South Korea‘s capital Seoul said a man wearing bunny ears and his friends are to blame for the tragedy for encouraging people to push each other.

The death toll from the Halloween event in the Itaewon district of Seoul on Saturday, October 29 climbed to 156 today according to a report by South Korean media Yonhap. At least 29 victims are in serious condition, and about 350 people are still unaccounted for.

A number of citizens and celebrities from Thailand attended the event which recorded one Thai fatality – teacher Natnicha “Bam Bam” Makaew. The 27 year old arrived in South Korea only a few months ago to study the Korean language.

The root cause of the tragedy is still unclear. Several local media reports say the tragedy unfolded when crowds tried to get into a bar that a celebrity visited. Chaos emerged from the rush of nearly 100,000 people. Some people couldn’t breathe as the place become gridlocked, and others fell to the floor causing a domino effect with others falling on top of those below.

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The South Korean media outlet Chosun reported today that the officers are working to find the cause of the Halloween stampede incident and the online rumour of the man with the bunny ears.

One South Korean netizen who survived the incident revealed on social media that a man aged about 20 years old stood behind him shouting “Push! Push!” He then pushed him to the floor.

Other survivors repeated the same story about the man wearing bunny ears and a group of five to six men who intentionally pushed others.

Officers revealed they are going through 52 CCTV cameras in the area, investigating videos shared online and questioning witnesses and victims before they can conclude the cause of the incident.

Some people blamed Korean police officers because only 137 police officers were sent to monitor the Halloween event.

Some media compared the event with the concert of the famous K-Pop band BTS in Busan two weeks ago before Halloween. The concert had only 50,000 participants, but over 2,700 police officers took care of the people.

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Petch Petpailin

Petpailin, or Petch, is a Thai translator and writer for The Thaiger who focuses on translating breakingThai news stories into English. With a background in field journalism, Petch brings several years of experience to the English News desk at The Thaiger. Before joining The Thaiger, Petch worked as a content writer for several known blogging sites in Bangkok, including Happio and The Smart Local. Her articles have been syndicated by many big publishers in Thailand and internationally, including the Daily Mail, The Sun and the Bangkok Post. She is a news writer who stops reading news on the weekends to spend more time cafe hopping and petting dwarf shrimp! But during office hours, you can find Petch on LinkedIn and you can reach her by email at

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