Starship Releases Official Statement On School Violence Rumors Involving MONSTA X’s Kihyun
Read the full statement below:
This is Starship Entertainment.
This is our position regarding the posts and rumors about our artist Kihyun that are being spread around online communities.
We recognize the seriousness of this issue and are contacting the member’s classmates as well as his teachers and acquaintances at the time in order to do our best to verify the facts. We ask for your understanding about the fact that it will require some time to confirm the many matters as a long time has passed since then. If the writer of the post allows for it, we are open for a discussion.
In a different case, one individual shared a post with the same content in both 2015 and 2021. At the time, we got in touch with the writer of the post and confirmed that the posts were false.
We had planned to take legal action as a way to protect our artist, but considering the many circumstances of the person who spread the post, we had them promise to reflect on their actions and prevent the incident from happening again. We left a handwritten record of the promise and showed them leniency. We can no longer look idly on these intentional and repetitive actions continuing despite the fact that [the promise] clearly remains in the handwritten document, so we will be holding them legally responsible by any possible means that can be taken by the company.
Moreover, we will do our best to protect the rights and interests of our artists by taking strong follow-up measures through constant monitoring and legal action against malicious slander, the spread of false rumors, and more regarding our artists that pertain to a violation of the laws of defamation and insult.
We once again deeply thank the many people who support the company and our artists.
On February 22, a post was uploaded to an online community with the title, “I was a victim of school violence by MONSTA X’s [Kihyun].” The writer of the post (henceforth referred to as “A”) stated that they had been in the same class as Kihyun in their third year of middle school.
“A” wrote, “I had pushed it aside because over 10 years had passed and he’s not someone I’d get involved with again, but since celebrities and victims are mustering up their courage and telling the truth, I’m also writing this.
“Kihyun was a delinquent who was talented and popular at the time as well. Some of the other kids and I were called jjintta (loser), bullied, hit, and embroiled in strange rumors.
“I’d get my money taken, and I had to buy him cigarettes. He wasn’t that serious of a delinquent, but there was also a time when a female classmate cried after he hit her for having a lot of acne and being unpleasant to look at.”
“A” also claimed that they had photos of Kihyun drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes with other delinquents.
Korea is recently seeing a social movement of victims of school violence and bullying coming forward about their experiences. This comes after famous Korean volleyball athletes, twins Lee Jae Yeong and Lee Da Yeong, were revealed to have bullied their classmates in their school days and were ultimately removed from the national team.