Saturday, 20. September 2014
11. 07. 14. - 15:00
Chinese police have arrested 11 boys aged between nine and 13 after they decided to beat an eight-year-old classmate to death because they were bored.
According to police the body of eight-year-old Zhang Tai had been found lying beside the road just outside a village near the city of Zhangjiakou in north-western China's Hebei province.
Although he was taken to hospital he was later declared dead from massive head injuries. His entire body was also covered with bruises.
Police on the scene quickly established that the child had been seen together with a bunch of other children from the area. After they were questioned they admitted that they had beaten the eight-year-old after deciding they were bored and looking for something interesting to do.
Police spokesman Cong Lu said: "The idea seems to have been suggested by a boy called Dong Dong, the son of the local greengrocer. We are interviewing all of the boys now to try to find out the extent to which each was involved."
The dead boy's father Zhang Han, 42, who works as a bricklayer said: "I have to go to the local town to work so my son is being raised here by my grandfather, and without parents he was often the victim of local bullies. He told me that the pocket money I gave him was often stolen by local boys and he didn't like going to school because he was picked on. But I never realised things had got this bad."
The dead boy's grandfather Zhang Kuo, 67, said he had left the child playing in the yard but when he went out to see him later there was no sign of the child. Another boy had told him that Tai had agreed to go with the boys, saying that the child had added: "They promised not to beat him any more if he agreed to go with them."
Kuo added: "I was instantly worried because I know that Dong Dong is a bully. My grandson told me that he had to call the boy "Big Brother" and that whenever he wanted someone to follow him he would either threaten them, or if he couldn't threaten them would provide them with food from his father's shop. He didn't like my grandson because he had refused to hand over his pocket money and later complained to Dong Dong's mother."
Although reporters were on the scene many of the school kids told them that the headmaster had warned them they would be locked up if they spoke to the media. The dead boy's father and grandfather have said they will be suing both the school for failing to stop the bullying and the parents of those involved in the attack on their son.
Dad Zhang Han said: "When my wife left me and our son two years ago it was hard to find the strength to go on, but knowing that Tai was healthy and well helped me keep going. He was everything to me, and now he's gone I don't know what I'm going to do. I feel like my life has come to an end, I miss him so much."
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