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Police Notification: Fatal Stabbing in Kunshan Road-Rage Incident Ruled Self-Defense

The Kunshan road-rage incident is the biggest topic on Chinese social media this week. Police now state that the cyclist who killed his attacker is acquitted, ruling the controversial stabbing as ‘self-defense.’

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With more than 880 million 1.8 billion views, it was the biggest topic of this week on Chinese social media: the Kunshan road-rage incident with a bizarre twist, in which the cyclist being attacked by a BMW driver with a knife, ended up killing the man with his own weapon. Police have now ruled the case self-defense.

According to a police statement released on Saturday afternoon, September 1st, the bike rider who fatally stabbed the BMW driver who attacked him has handled out of self-defense. (We reported about this case earlier this week here).

The statement was published on the official Weibo account of the Kunshan police (@昆山公安), and received over 77,000 shares within an hour.

On Weibo, netizens are happy about the news; the majority of people sided with the cyclist, a 41-year-old hotel worker by the name of Yu Haiming (于海明). Some people even organized crowd-funding campaigns to help pay for his legal costs, and the past week has seen a flood of memes about the incident in support of the cyclist.

 

Bizarre Road-Rage Incident

 

The incident occurred on the night of August 27, when a BMW vehicle in Kunshan, Jiangsu, turned into a bike line, colliding with the cyclist who refused to give way. Two men then stepped out of their BMW vehicle to confront the cyclist, with one man going back to his vehicle, suddenly pulling out a long knife.

Surveillance videos [YouTube link] capture the moment, which show how the muscular and tattooed BMW driver attacks Yu with the big knife – but then suddenly loses grip and drops the knife on the ground.

Bike driver (white shirt) is attacked by the BMW driver with a knife.

That is the pivotal moment when Yu quickly grabs the knife and starts attacking the BMW driver. Various videos show how the bike driver runs after the man, hitting and stabbing him with the knife at least five or six times – eventually killing him.

The bike driver hits the BMW driver with the knife for the fifth time.

The BMW driver turned out to be the somewhat notorious Liu Hailong (刘海龙) aka ‘Brother Long’ (龙哥) a 36-year-old ex-convict who previously spent years in prison for robbery, theft, and another knifing incident.

Liu Hailong aka ‘Brother Long’

He had been drinking the night of the incident.

 

“Brother Long Terminator”

 

The topic was a trending topic on Chinese social media all week, which a main question being: To what degree is self-defence legitimate?

One of the cartoons that has been published on this incident past week.

Some lawyers quoted in various news articles (read our report here) alleged that Yu might be held responsible for intentional injury and death, since the video footage showed that Liu tried to get away once Yu came after him with the knife – making the stabbing incident one of attack instead of defense.

The fact that Yu stabbed his attacker many times (the video shows at least six instances) was also considered to go beyond self-defense, making it possible for him to face up to ten years in prison.

But as more information about the case emerged, most netizens concluded that ex-con ‘Brother Long’ had deserved his own death.

The 41-year-old Yu, who is known as a hard-working man with no criminal records, was even called the “Brother Long Terminator” by some, who compared the incident to a video game in which the main character defeats his enemy with his own knives.

 

Detailed Report Rules Legitimate Self-Defense

 

According to the police statement that was issued today, in the first moments of the violent stabbing, cyclist Yu was stabbed in the neck, waist, and leg by Liu. Once Yu succeeded in grabbing the machete, he stabbed Liu Hailong in the abdomen, buttocks, right chest, left shoulder, and left elbow.

The moment Yu has grabbed the knife and attacks Liu, stabbing him five times in seven seconds.

The BMW driver then flees the scene and falls into a grass field some 30 meters away from the car. (This image on YouTube shows Liu in the grass with severe injuries- viewer discretion is advised). Meanwhile, Yu has stopped his pursuit and turns to the BMW vehicle to take out Liu’s mobile phone, out of fear that Liu or others might call other people for reinforcement in the attack.

When police arrived at the scene, Yu immediately handed them over the mobile phone and the weapon, which has since been identified as a sharp-edged double-sided blade with a total length of 59 cm.

Liu Hailong was soon taken to the hospital but died that same night. Yu did not sustain any life-threatening injuries.

Forensic researchers have now found that in the first seven seconds in which Yu stabbed Liu with the knife he grabbed from the ground, he stabbed him a total of five times, of which the first stab might have been the most lethal one; stabbing him in the left abdomen, causing the large abdominal vein to rupture. The fact that the first strike allegedly was the lethal one might have also helped in the self-defense ruling.

“The behavior of Yu Haiming is [ruled as] legitimate defense and he does not bear criminal responsibility,” the police notifiation states, in accordance with Article 20 of the Criminal Law of the People’s Republic of China that defines self-defense.

The statement also says that Yu’s personal safety was “seriously endangered” when Liu Hailong first attacked him with his bare hands, and then continued to hit him with a knife. It suggests that throughout the incident, Yu was constantly in danger – even when he had the knife – thereby denying any claims that Yu’s actions were excessive and illegal.

The police report further reveals that BMW driver Liu was found to have a blood-alcohol level of 87mg/100ml (0.087).

The night of the incident, there were three other passengers in the BMW car. One of them, the male passenger who can be seen first getting out of the car in the video, gets a ten-day prison sentence for his involvement in the incident. The two other passengers, both female, have been acquitted.

Besides being happy about the ruling, many netizens also praise the Kunshan police for their work. “I’ve never seen such a detailed police report, thumbs up for Kunshan police!”, some commenters write.

image via 野望文存-财经

“It’s a good thing we have surveillance cameras nowadays,” another person says: “Ten years ago, he might have been held responsible.”

Others write: “Wonderful news, justice has prevailed! This restores some faith among the common people.”

By Manya Koetse and Miranda Barnes

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us.

©2018 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

Stories that are authored by the What's on Weibo Team are the stories that multiple authors contributed to. Please check the names at the end of the articles to see who the authors are.

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China and Covid19

Residents in Locked Down Lhasa Say Local Epidemic Situation is a “Giant Mess”

Manya Koetse

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They’ve been in lockdown for 42 days already, but according to some Lhasa-based bloggers, there have been no improvements in the local epidemic situation. They say there is a stark difference between what officials are reporting and the daily reality they are dealing with in Tibet.

“The epidemic situation is bad in Lhasa, please pay attention,” one netizen wrote on Weibo on September 15, pointing to many new posts surfacing on Chinese social media about the difficulties people are facing in Lhasa city in Tibet.

Over the past week, many Tibet-based bloggers have posted on social media about the local circumstances, and hundreds of Chinese social media posts talk about similar problems in the region. Despite the ongoing lockdown, they say, there are still a growing number of positive cases within Lhasa communities; buses are allegedly going back and forth to bring people to quarantine sites where those testing positive and negative are mixed; they claim that there is an absolute lack of management and control; and many locals suggest that the official reports do not reflect the actual number of Covid cases at all.

According to the official numbers, Tibet saw its peak in Covid cases on August 17 and has since reported fewer new cases, reporting a total of 118 new cases on Thursday.

“I am a bit shocked!” one local social media user wrote: “What I saw was a total of 28 buses lined up outside Lhasa Nagqu No. 2 Senior High School, and then still more [buses] were coming. One bus can fit around 50 people, so there must have been around 1400 positive cases. There was a blind man, there were elderly people in wheelchairs, there were swaddled-up babies, from getting on the bus at 9.30 pm up to now, we’ve been waiting for 5 hours and we’re still waiting now. It’s just pure chaos at the school entrance, there is no order. I won’t sleep tonight.”

On the 14th of September, another netizen wrote:

“In order to welcome central government leaders to Lhasa and to demonstrate the “excellent” epidemic prevention capabilities of the local government & the “outstanding” results of the fight against the epidemic to them, they moved citizens to the rural areas and let them all stay crowded together in unfinished concrete buildings, with all kinds of viruses having free reign.”

On a Lhasa community message board, one Weibo user wrote: “Lhasa has already been in lockdown for over a month, yet our little community has so many infected people that I’m wondering how effective a lockdown actually is? Has Tibet been forgotten? When other places in China have a few positive cases it becomes a hot topic. But what about Tibet? And what about Lhasa?”

Another anonymous poster writes: “Regarding the Lhasa epidemic situation, the numbers were already a bit fake before, but I can understand it was also to take the public sentiment into consideration. I personally don’t care how you report the data, as long as the epidemic prevention and control work is properly managed, then the lockdown can be lifted soon and nobody will say anything about it. But a month has passed already, and in a town with some hundred thousands of people, the epidemic work is increasingly getting worse. Many people around me have never even left the house and inexplicably turned out to test positive. Meanwhile those who tested positive are quarantined together with people who still tested negative, it’s a giant mess.”

 

“Lhasa hasn’t had a Covid outbreak for the past three years, the city doesn’t have enough experience in controlling the epidemic.”

 

“It’s the 42nd day of lockdown,” another person wrote on Friday: “People are lining up to go to centralized isolation, Lhasa has been in lockdown longer than Chengdu, but it doesn’t make it to the hot topic lists. People who tested negative again and again suddenly turn out to be positive. Lhasa hasn’t had a Covid outbreak for the past three years, the city doesn’t have enough experience in controlling the epidemic. It’s going to be hard to restore tourism here before the end of the year. Before, big crowds would come to visit.

Over the past few days, following a heightened focus on the situation in Xinjiang, there has also been more attention for the epidemic situation in Tibet.

“Please pay more attention to the topic of the Lhasa epidemic,” one person wrote, repeating a similar message sent out by many others: “Lhasa doesn’t need your prayers, we need exposure.”

On Friday, one popular gamer with more than a million followers wrote on Weibo:

“Many have been reaching out to me via private messages, saying that the epidemic situation in Tibet’s Lhasa is very serious. If it’s really like this, I hope matters can be settled as soon as possible. I don’t know if this post can stay up or not, but I want to try my best to speak up and generate more attention to this epidemic trend. I experienced two months of lockdown in Shanghai myself and understand what it feels like. I have faith in our nation, and I believe the country will definitely take action. Everyone in Tibet, jiayou [come on].”

Many of the comments and posts coming from Lhasa are similar to those we saw last week, coming from Yining in Xinjiang. Social media users based in these places complain that many of their posts have been deleted and that it is very difficult for local residents to make their voices heard.

This is different from the previous lockdown situations in, for example, Xi’an, Shanghai, or Chengdu, where people posted videos, photos, and shared their lockdown experiences, either from home, from the Covid testing lines, or from the makeshift hospitals.

On the one hand, the reason why people in places such as Lhasa or Yining have more difficulties in making their stories heard in China’s hectic social media environment relates to the fact that these places have a relatively small population size – while Yining and Lhasa have approximately 542,00 and 465,000 inhabitants respectively, there are 21 million people in Chengdu and some 26 million in Shanghai.

But a bigger barrier to posting about their circumstances is formed by the social media censorship that is extra strict when it comes to Xinjiang and Tibet as these places are considered sensitive political subjects, which is why topics related to these regions see far more aggressive online censorship – even for seemingly innocuous posts.

One Weibo user with over 600,000 followers wrote: “In such a sensitive place as Tibet, I really needn’t worry about whether they’re gonna see my post or not. I posted to vent my anger and scolded the leadership for a bit and within 24 hours the police came to my hotel and asked me to delete my posts. Now that everyone is asking for help like this, they will definitely see it, but they are determined to do this and do so on purpose, it’s clear they don’t care about people’s lives.”

Meanwhile, Chinese official media reporting on the epidemic situation in Tibet stress the collective effort to fight the virus in Lhasa. On September 15, People’s Daily reported how 18 sister provinces and cities across China sent their best teams to Tibet to help with local anti-epidemic work and to bring supplies.

The Tibet-based military blogger ZhufengZhengrong (@珠峰峥嵘) writes: “It’s been over a month and my comrade-in-arms are still fighting on the front line (..). I just hope the epidemic will end soon, and that I will be able to meet my family and hold my children and weep.”

By Manya Koetse 

 

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China Brands & Marketing

Young Chinese Woman Dies at Haidilao Hotpot Restaurant

The woman allegedly choked while having beef tripe.

Manya Koetse

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On September 8, a woman from Putian in Fujian Province unexpectedly passed away while having hotpot at a Haidilao restaurant in a local mall.

The incident went trending on Chinese social media on Thursday, with the hashtags “Woman Suddenly Passes Away While Having Haidilao Hotpot” (#女孩海底捞吃火锅意外身亡#) and “Haidilao Responds to Female Customer Passing Away During Dinner” (#海底捞回应女顾客就餐时身亡#) receiving 50 million and 300 million views respectively.

According to various Chinese news reports, the 21-year-old woman had just finished eating beef tripe, the edible lining from the cow stomach, and drank some water after which she suddenly became unwell.

Footage circulating on Chinese social media shows how restaurant staff gave first aid to the woman by performing the Heimlich maneuver while emergency workers were underway.

Although it is rumored the young woman choked on the tripe, this has not yet been confirmed as an investigation into the cause of death is ongoing. The Haidilao restaurant where the incident happened is currently closed, and Haidilao responded that they are deeply saddened and will do all they can to fully cooperate with the police to investigate the case.

Haidilao (海底捞) is one of China’s most popular restaurant chains serving authentic Sichuan hotpot, a dining style where fresh meat and vegetables are dipped in simmering broth. Besides its tasty hotpot and wide selection of ingredients and drinks, Haidilao is known for its high-quality service. The staff is thoroughly trained in providing the best customer service, and Haidilao has introduced new concepts throughout the years to enhance the customer experience.

Haidilao is a very reputable company and is known to respond quickly to avert social media crises (example here and here).

As the story goes trending, many Chinese netizens point out the choking hazard of beef tripe. One lung doctor (@呼吸科大夫胡洋) also responded to the incident, suggesting that the Heimlich maneuver might not have been life-saving in this case since beef tripe is long and soft and could block the respiratory tract if the Heimlich maneuver is performed while the person is standing up, since it could potentially cause the tripe to go deeper instead of being pushed out.

The doctor recommends in these kind of emergency situations that if possible, for a chance of survival, the person could then be placed into an upside down, upper body down position for the Heimlich maneuver.

Other doctors on Weibo also use this moment to provide more information about how to perform the Heimlich maneuver.

Many online commenters think Haidilao is not necessarily to blame for what happened. “Judging from the video, the staff was quick and correct in their response. As for why the woman could not have been rescued, we’ll have to wait for the final reports.”

By Manya Koetse 

 

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Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us. First-time commenters, please be patient – we will have to manually approve your comment before it appears.

©2022 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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