SEOUL — South Korea’s Ministry of Justice requested a “release of criminal jurisdiction” Tuesday in the case of a U.S. soldier accused of duty-related accidental homicide, U.S. Forces Korea officials confirmed Wednesday.

The request asks that USFK turn jurisdiction in the case over to the South Korean justice system.

USFK “will thoroughly review the matter and give full and sympathetic consideration to this request,” a USFK statement released Wednesday said.

Under the U.S.-South Korean Status of Forces Agreement, USFK has 28 days to answer the South Korean request. U.S. officials can request a 14-day extension.

The request stems from a June 10 incident in which 19-year-old Pfc. Jeff Bryant, driving an 8th Army truck, struck and killed 51-year-old Kim Myung-ja in Dongducheon, near Camp Casey.

South Korean police investigators, who say Kim was jaywalking at the time of the accident, forwarded charges of “duty-related accidental homicide” to the Uijongbu city prosecutor’s office in late June.

In early July, USFK officials provided the prosecutors with an “official duty certificate,” which declares Bryant was on duty at the time of the accident. Under the SOFA, the U.S. military adjudicates when U.S. troops are accused of crimes committed while on duty.

USFK officials have said they’re not compelled to prosecute because “each case is evaluated and addressed individually.”

An official from the Justice Ministry confirmed the request.

Hwang Hae-rym contributed to this report.

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