MENU
component-ddb-728x90-v1-01-desktop

Video shows final moments before student became North Korea's prisoner

Video shows final moments before student (in light blue jacket second row, fourth from the left) became North Korea's prisoner (Photo Courtesy Daily Mail)

In one of his final moments before he was taken prisoner, a University of Virginia student enjoyed a playful snow day with friends.

Otto Warmbier's family released a clip of the footage exclusively to the Daily Mail.

Dressed in winter clothes, the 22-year-old gleefully plays along with friends on a New Year's tour in North Korea.

The Daily Mail reports the video was taken only a few days before being incarcerated by the government.

The student arrived home to Ohio Tuesday in a coma. In a press conference, doctors stated he suffered severe injury to all regions of his brain.

They described his state as "unresponsiveness wakefulness."

He shows no consistent response to stimulation, and doesn't show any sign of understanding language.

Family wished his prognosis to remain confidential.

Warmbier spent 17 months as a prisoner in North Korea, and the better part of a year of it in a coma, according to his family.

The government alleged he tore down a propaganda banner in a staff-only location at his hotel with the intention to steal it.

He was sentenced to 15 years of hard labor.

A roommate of Warmbier's who was a part of the tour group that traveled to the country told The Washington Post Thursday he doesn't believe the North Korean government's version of events.

Danny Gratton said the last time he saw Warmbier, the 22-year-old was taken by North Korean security officials after handing his American passport to an immigration officer at the Pyongyang International Airport.

The group was leaving the country after a four-day, three-night trip.

When they arrived to the Beijing Capital International Airport, a tour guide reached out and spoke to Warmbier - who was left behind.

According to The Washington Post's interview with Gratton, the UVA student said "he had a severe headache and wanted to be taken to the hospital," and was too ill to travel.

Nearly a month later, Gratton heard reports the government was detaining the 22-year-old.

The Associated Press reports a U.S. diplomat who traveled to North Korea to bring Warmbier back to the states was able to make contact with three other American prisoners still detained.

The State Department wouldn't confirm their medical conditions.



Trending