DULUTH — A former employee of a Korean radio station in Duluth injured himself and another person when he tried to firebomb the station, Gwinnett County Fire Officials said. Capt. Tommy Rutledge of the Gwinnett County Fire Department said Hong Seop Chae tried to burn down the radio station that fired him about a month ago.
“There were two Molotov cocktails, one was spent and one was still intact,” Rutledge said. “We also believed he sprayed or splashed about an additional accelerant in order to ignite that.” Chae, 51, walked into the station around 3:30 p.m. Monday. Cpt. Rutledge said the damage was very minor, most it due to smoke. The fire had put itself out when firefighters arrived. Chae was taken to Gwinnett Medical Center with moderate burns. He was arrested at the hospital and was taken to the Gwinnett County jail. He remains in prison, charged with two counts of possession of a destructive device and one count of first-degree arson. Officials don’t know an exact motive.
The victim was a relative of an employee of Atlanta Radio Korea WPBC-1080 AM, Rutledge said. He suffered serious burns and remains in the hospital. Kevin Kim, the host of the station, was not in at the time but said the station was off the air for several hours to clear smoke from the building. He said at least eight to ten people were inside. “It could have been a lot worse, Rutledge said. “Even though we had two people that were injured, nobody died and the building was not burned to the ground. This certainly is not something that happens every day.”