Woman Using Smartphone Walks Into Glass Wall, Breaks Family Heirloom, Demands Compensation

May 7, 2019 Updated: September 6, 2019

After a woman walked into a glass window of a shopping center and broke a family heirloom while using her smartphone, she blamed the marketplace and demanded they compensate her for damages. The market disagreed and gave her a coupon instead, which she accepted, according to mainland Chinese media outlet KNews.

The woman wore a jade bracelet, which had been given to her by her grandmother when she got married. The incident happened on April 16 in Hangzhou City, Zhejiang Province, but police only recently released footage of their investigation with the woman.

The woman was not identified in the report.

How the Bracelet Met the Glass

Closed circuit cameras revealed the woman walking out of the market with her friend. In the footage, she can be seen with her head down and arm up, most likely holding a cell phone.

She called the police saying that the door to a shopping center had damaged her bracelet.

“Were you playing with your phone?” the officer asked her, according to body-cam footage reported by KNews.

“I was carrying my phone,” the woman responded.

“So were you looking at it or doing something else?” the officer continued to question her.

“I wasn’t looking at it,” the woman said, waving her hand in a dismissive manner. “It was WeChat, I was carrying the phone and listening to it.” WeChat is the most popular messaging app in China, and has a function to send short voice messages.

“You didn’t notice the door, right?” the officer asked.

“It wasn’t that I didn’t notice the door,” the woman said as she turned abruptly to face it. “I wasn’t walking to this side, I thought the other side had a door.”

Later, as the woman and her friend were standing outside talking to a group of officers, she shows the damage to her heirloom. “I got the bracelet when I was married, my grandmother gave it to me,” the woman said in the body-cam footage reported by KNews. “I don’t dare wear the bracelet now.”

“We are asking them to fix it,” the friend says in support of the woman, in the footage reported by KNews. The woman takes the light green and white jade bracelet out of a plastic bag, which was wrapped in a woven mitten. She points to one side of the bracelet which has a crack, but it is not clearly visible due to lighting.

The woman blamed the shopping center for not putting up any warning signs near the door, or railing around the glass window to prevent people from running into it.

According to KNews, the market was unwilling to pay for the cost of repairing the jade bracelet. However, a person in charge of the market offered a 400 yuan ($60) coupon as compensation.

In the end, the woman agreed to the market’s offer.