If Hollywood directors are looking for absurd yet true stories, they should check out the Chinese news. A shooting incident on May 2 at a train station in Heilongjiang Province would be the perfect example.
Xu Chunhe, 45, took his three little children, and 83-year-old mother to the Qingan train station. During the check-in, Xu got into a conflict with a police officer named Li Lebin, who shot Xu dead in front of his family.
So what exactly happened in the waiting room?
State media reported that Xu was shot for assaulting a policeman, stating: “Xu stopped other passengers from entering the station. In the fight, Xu grabbed the officer’s baton and even tried to grab his gun. The policeman had to shoot him to protect other passengers.” The police also said Xu might have mental issues. Li Lebin was praised and rewarded for keeping the station safe.
However, many bloggers voiced doubt and suspicion over the matter. Why did Xu stop other people entering the station? How can a father with children and an elderly mother try to assault a policeman? It just makes no sense.
Weibo users found Xu’s family had petitioned to the local government several times due to extreme poverty. Xu’s wife has psychological problems. He and his mother often had to take the children to beg on the street for a living. Xu was going to take the train to another city and look for a job, since the petitions weren’t helping him and his family.
Immediately bloggers suspected that the real cause of the conflict was that the policeman wanted to prevent Xu from going to petition again. Xu was not assaulting the policeman, but simply defending himself. This was supported by video clips provided by a witness.
In the footage, we can see Xu was the one who got bullied and beaten. Xu was hit over the head several times so he had to grab the baton. In the video, viewers can clearly hear that Xu’s son and daughter kept saying:
Daddy, don’t fight. Let’s go home. Go home.
The video got censored and deleted within a few hours. However, more details were revealed online. Weibo users worked out that Xu was slapped in the face by the policeman, and tried to argue with him. Li immediately pulled out a gun and wanted to shoot. But Li held back since he knew that would cause trouble. He went back to the duty room and got the baton, then beat Xu to provoke him. When Xu grabbed the baton from the taller man, there was a reason to shoot him.
Li’s family was paid $30,000 dollars for their loss. Ironically, the policeman received a reward for killing. The victim sacrificed his life but achieved his “Chinese dream.” According local authorities, his three children were adopted by an orphanage, his wife was sent to a mental hospital, and his mom went to a nursing home. How sad is this?