A police station chief in Hunan Province was shot to death after having his gun snatched from him on May 13, according to Chinese media reports.
Boxun, a dissident website, said the killing occurred in the context of a “mass incident” in Dao County after the policeman had fired his gun into the air in an attempt to warn the crowd. Other reports said the police chief was attempting to mediate a civil dispute and was killed by the male party.
Reports were consistent that, after killing the police chief, the man trained his weapon on the director of Justice Bureau and a driver on the scene, wounding them both.
A local police officer told The Epoch Times that a couple was fighting on the noon of May 13 near a highway that was under construction. The husband is an irascible man who often menaces his wife, the man said. The chief of the Xianglinpu Police Station and director of Justice Bureau arrived at the scene to resolve the conflict after receiving a call.
"The man knocked the police chief unconscious by surprise, then snatched his gun and fired at his head, killing him on the spot and injuring the director of Justice Bureau with another shot. When more policemen rushed to the scene, he shot and wounded another driver as well, and took the driver as hostage," the police officer said.
The police officer said that the hostage had been rescued and the case was being investigated; he said that his knowledge of the incident may not be accurate and that official information would be released the next day.
An Epoch Times reporter later learned from a local hospital that the two wounded were sent to the Dao County People's Hospital; it is unclear whether the two wounded individuals were in critical condition or not.
“Some say that the gun was snatched by onlookers who were angered by the warning shot that the police fired, and in the midst of the chaos one officer was killed and two other men were wounded. It was said that the murderer had escaped,” a staff of the local hospital told The Epoch Times.
A slightly different version of events appeared in Southern Metropolis Daily. That newspaper reported that the man first assaulted and killed the police chief with a hoe; then snatched the police chief’s gun, shot and wounded the other two, and fled the scene; afterwards, he was killed during a standoff with the police. It was unclear from the report whether the police were supposed to have killed him or he had committed suicide.
Southern Metropolis Daily’s report said the man was identified as a Mr. Wang, 36 or 37 years old. He is married with three children; he had a fight with his wife on the morning of May 13; the police chief went to mediate the dispute with his colleague, but was assaulted by Wang.
A user of the popular Tianya Internet forum added another shade to the story, claiming that the police station chief had just fired a warning shot when the gun was snatched from him; he was shot in the head and died on the spot, and the Justice Bureau director was wounded; the killer escaped, and the director was sent to the emergency room.
Southern Metropolis Daily quoted another newspaper as saying that on April 15, a similar situation occurred in Dao County where Hu Guguijun, the director of the Xianzijiao Justice Bureau, was assaulted and killed by someone with a hoe, also while mediating a civil dispute.
Reports of killings of police are extremely rare in China. In mid-2008 a man named Yang Jia stabbed to death six police officers in a police station in Shanghai. He was lauded as a hero. During his trial hundreds of protesters—many of whom were educated and middle-aged, according to reports—arrived at the Shanghai Higher People's Court with signs reading "Long Live the Killer," "Down with the Communist Party," and "Down with fascists."