Woman accused in death of US soldier’s 3-year-old son refuses psychiatric evaluation
CAMP HUMPHREYS, South Korea — Jamaica Eblacas, 30, a Pyeongtaek bartender who admitted killing a U.S. soldier’s 3-year-old son, is refusing a court-ordered psychiatric evaluation or to cooperate with her defense attorney, the attorney told Stars and Stripes on Wednesday.
“We’re frustrated,” attorney Jung Wang Jae told Stars and Stripes in an interview Thursday. “We feel a bit bad for our client. This is a big case, and she has a baby as well.”
At her arraignment Nov. 5, Eblacas admitted killing Noa Calhoun, the son of Army Pvt. James and Kourtney Calhoun, after his father left the child and his 7-year-old brother in her care two months earlier.
James Calhoun is assigned to the 61st Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Company at Camp Humphreys.
Eblacas appeared again Wednesday at the Pyeongtaek branch of Suwon District Court for a trial on an unrelated matter. Prosecutors seek $848 compensation for a South Korean man, 72, who said Eblacas injured him during an argument over a cellphone repair bill.
According to police statements provided the court, Eblacas alleged the man beat her during the dispute April 5. The man, however, said he grabbed her hair in self-defense after she threw three flowerpots at his head. In court the man told prosecutors he needed several stiches on his face following the altercation.
Eblacas failed to respond to questions Wednesday from the prosecutor and Chief Judge Kim Seyong. She nodded her head on occasion but would not speak. She did not reply, for example, when asked to confirm her signature and handwriting on her police report.
Jung, the defense attorney, told the three-judge panel that Eblacas’ former husband, a South Korean, said she exhibited “schizophrenic dispositions” during their marriage.
Jung told Stars and Stripes that Eblacas is uncooperative during their consultations, even when speaking through an English translator. An interpreter translates their conversations and court proceedings in Korean into English for Eblacas, who is fluent in that language, Jung said.
Eblacas admitted killing Noa Calhoun during her arraignment last week by the same three-judge panel. Police said they discovered Noa’s bruised body the morning after the two children were dropped off by their father. Prosecutors alleged the boy was stabbed by a kitchen knife and hit in the head by a wardrobe.
Eblacas is charged with murder in conjunction with child abuse, a crime that carries a minimum sentence of three years in prison and a maximum penalty of death. She is in police custody and scheduled to appear in court again in early December on the murder charge.