Chinese boy, 13, suspected of killing parents picked up by police 1,900km from home

  • Teenager Luo Feng confessed to attacking his mother and father after row over not being allowed to visit an internet cafe, police say
  • Child’s uncle says boy was sent away to boarding school last year in hope of curing his video game obsession
PUBLISHED : Thursday, 03 January, 2019, 7:43pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 03 January, 2019, 7:43pm

The 13-year-old Chinese boy suspected of beating his parents to death with a hammer on Monday before running away has been arrested, according to a local media report.

The child, Luo Feng, was apprehended on Wednesday by police in the city of Dali in southwest China’s Yunnan province, news website reported on Wednesday.

He had travelled more than 1,900km (1,180 miles) from his home in Hengnan county in the central Chinese province of Hunan.

According to a statement by police in Hengnan, Luo confessed to the crime after being taken into custody. It went on to detail the events of New Year’s Eve, when Luo is suspected of killing his 51-year-old father, Luo Jichun, and 45-year-old mother, Tan Jinhua.

Chinese police searching for boy, 13, accused of killing parents with a hammer

The statement, published on Weibo – China’s Twitter-like platform – said Luo attacked his parents after his mother refused to give him money to go to an internet cafe.

The boys’ parents were found dead at their home in the town of Santang after Luo’s older sister alerted her uncle to what had happened, who in turn called the authorities. Both Tan and her daughter had learning disabilities, according to earlier media reports.

The police statement said that Luo fled the scene on his father’s motorbike and after spending two hours playing games at the internet cafe bought a train ticket to Yunnan using his father’s identity card.

His uncle was quoted as saying the boy had become obsessed with playing video games and that his parents had enrolled him at a boarding school about six months ago in an effort change his ways.

His class teacher, Teng Ping, said Luo appeared sensitive to his mother’s intellectual limitations around other children but was full of praise for her in an essay she asked him to write.

“My mother is … nice and intelligent in the eyes of the our neighbours,” the boy wrote. “At home, she is a good mother and a good wife. She made me stronger and a good kid.”

A teacher at Luo’s former school described him as “quiet but calculating”.

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Neither the police statement nor the news report said what would happen next to Luo, but an official from the education bureau in Hengnan was quoted as saying it was possible he might be allowed to return to school.

Under Chinese law, children aged 14 to 16 who are convicted of serious crimes can be sent to juvenile delinquent prisons, while those aged 13 to 17 and charged with minor offences are sent to juvenile delinquent schools where they are confined during the week but allowed to return home at weekends.

In early December, a 12-year-old boy spent three days in custody before he was released without charge after he admitted to stabbing his mother to death.