Watermelon farmer died of 'malformed' vascular hemorrhage, says Hunan police

Claiming Deng died after a brain vascular burst, seems to imply the attack was not solely to blame, says China's online community

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 01 August, 2013, 12:38pm
UPDATED : Friday, 02 August, 2013, 12:08pm

The Hunan watermelon farmer - who was brutally attacked by an urban management officer - died of brain hemorrhage induced by external force, local police said citing an autopsy report.

Police released the findings of the autopsy report on the death of Deng Zhengjia, 56, on Wednesday, China’s Southern Metropolis Daily reported. The Linwu farmer was reported dead on July 17, after he and his wife clashed with local urban management officers, or chengguan, at their watermelon stand.

China's online community are sceptical about the findings. They say that in claiming Deng died after a “malformed” brain vascular burst, the police statement seems to imply the violent attack by the chengguan was not solely to blame.

A doctor specialising in brain diseases, quoted in Chinese media reports, said that even without external cause, a “malformed vascular” could rupture and lead to a hemorrhage. His comments triggered an outpouring of angry comments online. 

“This means he always had this disease of 'vascular malformation' and he would have died anyway? ” one blogger asked.

“Does it mean I can go shoot a man and tell the police he died of a hemorrhage induced by external force?” another blogger wrote. 

Reports of the violent confrontation Deng and his wife had with the chengguan shocked people in China. The Beijing News quoted a witness saying that eight officers beat the couple, while one of them struck Deng's head with a metal object. When Deng fell to the ground, the chengguan refused to call an ambulance and left the scene, witnesses said.

Six urban management officers from Hunan's Linwu county have been detained on criminal charges related to the death of Deng. Local government has provided compensation of 897,000 yuan (HK$1.1 million) to the family, said the daily.