SHINee’s Onew Investigated for Sexual Harassment for Allegedly Grabbing a Woman Inappropriately at a Club

Hoo boy, this is so not the news update I wanted to hear on an idol-actor that I’m actually aware of who he is. Onew of the boy group SHINee has been accused of sexual harassment and the case is currently pending police investigation. Like his group mate Minho who I only know because he keeps acting in dramas and continues being a good looking plank of wood, Onew came to my awareness after being a notable supporting actor in the mega hit K-drama Descendants of the Sun as a member of the disaster area medical team. His acting was raw and rough but he has charming with a sunshine boy presence, and lucked into playing a fun role with just the right amount of screen time.

I wasn’t expecting much from him other than seeing him from time to time in K-dramas and having a generally favorable impression, and now he’s gone and really colored it. Onew was taken to the police station after being accused of sexual harassment at a club by a woman. His agency SM Entertainment has released a statement that it was just a misunderstanding based on how super drunk Onew was and he will reflect. Sigh, I just feel bad for the alleged victim and saddened that yet another idol has likely misbehaved.

SM claims that Onew was already drunk when he got to the club at 5 am in the morning, which in my heyday could be plausible but in my present life is when I wake up to work for a dozen hours and then stagger home exhausted when the sun sets but moving on. So Onew gets to the club and orders more alcohol, and then he grabs a woman’s leg who is dancing near him. She is upset but lets it go, until a short time later he grabs her again. Then she complains and reports him to the cops.

Onew’s side apologized mand says its all a misunderstanding because he’s so drunk and grabbed her leg to steady himself, and may even have mistook her leg for a pole. Because she was dancing on a platform hear his table, or whatnot. I’m like – boy, if you are ass drunk then stop drinking and go home to sleep it off. Being drunk is no excuse for any behavior because if it was then there is no liability in this world. That said, whether it’s actual sexual harassment I’ll leave to the cops to sort out, but my takeaway is that yet another friendly faced K-star just did a public opinion face plant.


SHINee’s Onew Investigated for Sexual Harassment for Allegedly Grabbing a Woman Inappropriately at a Club — 25 Comments

  1. If it was genuinely a mistake, I hope Onew will not his limits in the future and as Koala said, head home instead of continuing to party when he is already super drunk…

  2. Age of Youth season 2 is already over for me, regardless of Onew’s scandal. First, they’re not showing Kang Yi Na, who was an important member of Belle Epoque girls. Second, there is no Yoon Park, who was Yoon Jin Myung’s love interest and also a great character. Third, someone else is replacing Park Hye Soo who played Yoo Eun Jae, the protagonist in season 1, because of schedule conflicts.
    I was craving for season 2, because season 1 was perfectly captivating and wanted me to know more about how Belle Epoque girls are doing. But these changes alone are like a blasphemy. I’m afraid that season 2 will ruin all my expectations and my fond feelings for season 1.

    • I’m just amazed by the public opinion, and how it changes based on sex. When ryu hwa young was accused, mostly people bashed her and said it served her right. But in case of onew, it’s a misunderstanding? Also if his agency says it has been a misunderstanding and he ‘may have’ grabbed her leg taking it as a pole, that could all be a lie, to cover up his mistakes. So we don’t know anything really, who is really guilty and who not.

      • I think, Ryu Hwayoung’s case was different. T-ara was accused of bullying at the peak of their popularity and fame for five years and T-ara lost almost everything. Eunjung was dropped from her drama, they lost CFs and they got bashed to the point of death threats. When T-ara has apologised time after time. Finally, T-ara’s former staff revealed that Ryu Hwayoung wasn’t bullied at all, but she was showing attitude and unprofessionalism while working with the other members. The members made a mistake though and showed their frustration on social media. This was when Ryu Hwayoung’s leg was in bandage allegedly for spraining her ankle while the other members had to change their choreography because of that, and the staff member revealed that she walked perfectly fine outside the cameras. T-ara fans had to see for five years how their idols got bashed and how they were ridiculed for being their fans. Until Ryu Hwayoung and Ryu Hyoyoung were in Taxi variety show and again brought up that bullying case even though T-ara and fans have already apologised and moved on from that. That’s when that ex-staff member had enough and told the truth. The person who messed everything up was Kim Kwang Soo (their boss) who never clarified anything and added Hwayoung to a perfectly functioning group.. The Ryu sisters’ father is close with entertainment world and they have connections. So Ryu Hwayoung’s case can’t be compared to Onew.

      • I’m sorry, none of that long-ass word salad on how it’s justified to hate Ryu Hwayoung but not Onew, makes any sense.

        People are behaving as if she personally wrote the death threats to her former group (last I checked, she was one person and not thousands of netizens), is she responsible for netizens’ behaviour? Did she direct them to do all that crazy nonsense? But going ‘must be a misunderstanding’ automatically for the guy when he’s accused of sexual harassment and not even denying touching this woman inappropriately.

      • @teacakes Lol. I’m not saying the comments Ryu Hwayoung is getting are justified. I’m saying how these two situations are not comparable. T-ara fans are rightfully upset about a person who used public sympathy five years up to this day and came off clean when she has been *anything else but* a poor angel, the victim of big bad bullies, while their idols lost popularity and job opportunities. Lets not pretend like Ryu Hwayoung didn’t take advantage of this situation and didn’t deliberately use public sympathy. If you didn’t bother to read on this matter then stop twisting things to please your mind. And literally no one except delusional idiots are saying ’’it’s just a misunderstanding’’, you are greatly looking down upon sensible shawols by your statement. The victim herself dropped the charges after investigations and agreed HERSELF that it could be misunderstanding. Personally I think, neither should be hated but this is the lives of public figures, getting critique over anything and everything.

    • Btw pretty much agree with all that you said. Without kang yi na and the original park hye soo, this is already looking bland to me.

    • I’m feeling conflicted about Season 2 because of the same reasons: Park Hae Soo and Ryu Hwa Young are not returning (I love Yi-Na’s character), I don’t like having a replacement actress, and I’m upset that the guys from Season 1 are gone. I was hoping to see them again in Season 2. I don’t know how to feel about new lovelines. And then Onew has this incident. His character is suppose to fall in love with Ye-Eun, who is suffering from PTSD from her last relationship. How very ironic is that.

  3. Honestly, I don’t really understand what happened. If someone touch me in a club, I ask him to stop. I don’t call the police just for that. Either he did more than take her leg or either she’s very sensitive…

    • She didn’t call the police, her friend reported it to the police. He was apparently continuously touching her in his drunken state. That girl didn’t even know he was a celebrity. Later when investigations took place, the victim agreed that it could possibly be a misunderstanding since Onew was heavily drunk, hence she dropped the charges. People can speculate whatever they want, they’re already at it, thinking it could be that SM ent paid her to drop the charges. It could also be that Onew is innocent after all. Whatever the case is, a very important thing to remember is that being in intoxicated state never absolves the aggressor out of responsibility of their action. Also, where should people draw line? What is ’serious’ enough sexual harassment to be reported to the police? I think her friend did the right thing by reporting this to the police. Should he have just sat back and let Onew possibly continue molesting his friend? No matter how drunk someone is, they should never violate someone else’s bodily autonomy.

      • Some people said it was the victim’s boyfriend. The victim’s friend too said it was a misunderstanding. Just to be clear, he held her leg 2 times and both times his friends apologised on his behalf. It’s already said he was wasted and couldn’t even stand properly which is why the investigation took 5hrs. The only thing I can think positively here is he said “I don’t remember”, not “I didnt do it”. I guess, that shows he’s not trying to run away from the allegations. Also the charges were already dropped BEFORE channel A (who broke the news first) reported it. And they didn’t include this bit, of course. I’ll admit I’m a fan of his but he was wrong here and he admitted to touching her. Being drunk doesn’t excuse his behaviour, I can only hope he apologises and owns up to his mistake. Kpop has been embroiled in dirty controversies in the recent times and it certainly is creating a stereotype about idols now. I hope the investigation reveals whatever happened in detail and the respective parties get their closure.

      • I hope for Onew’s sake he seeks help. It seems to be that he has problem with alcohol consumption. SHINee was one of my favorite kpop groups couple years back. I’m happy that most shawols aren’t excusing Onew’s behavior and want him to seek help for his drinking. And most shawols have not victim blamed either which is extremely nice. Unlike Kim Hyun Joong and Park Yoochun fans, shawols are decent.

  4. @kurama the victim’s friend reported it and she reported after it happened twice. A completely wasted man grabbing your leg can be scary. I can understand why she reported. If it had happened once, you can think it was a mistake. If it happened twice, anyone will think it was intentional. It doesn’t help that he was blackout drunk. The dispatch article said the victim was dancing on the platform above onew’s table which was probably why they kept bumping into each other. I’m just trying to stay neutral here sigh.

  5. I think koreans drink a lot, I don’t know anyone but in all their dramas you can see how much they drink yo celebrate or if they have any problem. Regarding to Onew it isn’t his first time having problems and that will harm his group.
    I do love Shinee and I don’t know why their company only promote Exo guys who some of them all always trying to disband.
    And something else,maybe you don’t like how Minho acts but there are some actors like Lee Minho who are no better and no so good looking.
    I’m sure some of you will be angry but I do think he is a mediocre actor.

    • Lee Minho is a mediocre actor, always on Gu Jun Pyo or Kim Tan mode 🙂 . Not a bad actor though..
      And yes, the Korean drinking culture needs to change. It’s absurd how cheap and available even heavier liquor is (can be bought from convenience stores!). Also, I’m baffled how popular celebs like Suzy and IU can advertise alcohol when they have so many young fans looking up to them. Finally, how is it that in dramas it is allowed to almost glorify drinking? There needs to be a change because at this rate, Korean drinking culture coupled with working culture is going to cause major health and social problems. Btw, I’m still mad how they didn’t take alcoholism seriously enough in Oh My Ghostess. They tackled the subject but didn’t bother to explore it better.

  6. Drunk in public itself is wrong regardless of whether you famous or not. The guy seriously had issues with alcohol. He looks so innocent from outside but look can be so deceiving.

  7. I never drink, I know i’m too strict but for me alcohol is the same as drugs . To me abusing of any substance who can make you lose control of your acts is a big No. If you suffer from stress or anxiety go to see a doctor for an appropriate treatment. If you want to have a good time music and friends should be enough ! All thèses celebrities know that they are Under people scrutiny, if they want to keep their job they must take care. It’s the same for us , if we want to keep our job we must respect the rules.

  8. I don’t know it’s better to say “or celebrity was so drunk he was unable to stand and couldn’t tell a leg from a pole” The man still needs to get help. I’m glad the girl’s friends was there to come to her defense

  9. Well, we already knew the Onew was a “bad drinker” (he doesn’t know when he should stop). On a variety show Kyuhyun had to choose which person he’d rather NOT go drinking with and he chose Onew. As someone who loves to drink (see New Journey to the West 4), if even Kyuhyun can’t handle Onew’s level of drinking that’s saying something.

    Variety Show Clip

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