Skip to main content

Uproar in China over handcuffing of teenage girl

By Jethro Mullen, CNN
May 29, 2013 -- Updated 1225 GMT (2025 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Accusations on social media say a 13-year-old was paraded in handcuffs
  • A local party chief and police officer have been suspended pending an investigation
  • The party official denies the girl was paraded around, a Chinese website reports

Hong Kong (CNN) -- Two local officials in southwestern China have been suspended from their jobs following allegations on social media that a teenage girl was handcuffed and paraded around town after an altercation with a deputy mayor.

Authorities have placed Yuan Zehong, the top Communist Party official in Kele Township, Guizhou Province, and Chen Song, a local police officer, under investigation following the allegations, the county government said in a statement Tuesday, according to the state-run news agency Xinhua.

Accusations surfaced this week on the popular social media platform Weibo alleging that on April 6, Yuan and other officials handcuffed a 13-year-old girl, Rao Yao, and marched her up and down a street for about 20 minutes after she accidentally spilled water on a government car carrying the deputy mayor.

According to the allegations, the deputy mayor had physically fought with the girl, who was detained for 12 hours by authorities.

That version of events seems to have first been published by the Weibo user @yww272651564. But that account no longer appears to exist. In its report, Xinhua referenced an unidentified social media account as the source of the accusations.

The claims quickly spread in Chinese social media, with tens of thousands of people commenting on and re-posting them. Many users said the officials' actions were shameful.

But Yuan and local security officials have disputed the allegations against them.

In an article published on the website news.chengdu.com, Yuan said that the girl was handcuffed after she and two other family members kicked and beat the deputy mayor. He said the girl was put in a police vehicle and wasn't paraded around, the website reported.

According to a report on the case by local law enforcement officials cited by the website of the state-run newspaper People's Daily, the girl was taken to a vehicle parked 20 meters away from the scene. Officials didn't realize the girl was as young as 13 because of her height, according to the report.

It is unclear why the allegations only came to light several weeks after they are reported to have occurred.

The team of senior county officials and police who are investigating the incident was set up on Monday, Xinhua reported.

CNN's Lucrezia Seu and Feng Ke in Beijing, and Esther Pang in Hong Kong contributed to this report.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
See CNN's complete coverage on China.
July 8, 2014 -- Updated 0344 GMT (1144 HKT)
With a population of 1.3 billion, you'd think that there would be 11 people in China who are good enough to put up a fight on the football pitch.
July 4, 2014 -- Updated 0631 GMT (1431 HKT)
26-year-old Ji Cheng is the first rider from China to compete for competitive cycling's highest honor.
July 7, 2014 -- Updated 1124 GMT (1924 HKT)
China's richest man, Wang Jianlin, may not yet be a household name outside of China, but that could be about to change.
July 4, 2014 -- Updated 0414 GMT (1214 HKT)
Hong Kong's narrow streets were once a dazzling gallery of neon, where banks and even bordellos plied their trade under sizzling tubular signs.
July 3, 2014 -- Updated 2357 GMT (0757 HKT)
When President Xi Jinping arrives in Seoul this week, the Chinese leader will have passed over North Korea in favor of its arch rival.
July 3, 2014 -- Updated 1159 GMT (1959 HKT)
Three more officials have been given the chop as part of China's anti-corruption drive, including former aides to the retired security chief.
July 1, 2014 -- Updated 1305 GMT (2105 HKT)
As thousands of Hong Kongers prepare for an annual protest, voices in China's press warn pro-democracy activism is a bad idea.
June 30, 2014 -- Updated 0437 GMT (1237 HKT)
Hong Kongers are demanding the right to directly elect their next leader, setting up a face-off with Beijing.
July 1, 2014 -- Updated 0656 GMT (1456 HKT)
The push for democratic reform in Hong Kong is testing China's "one country, two systems" model.
June 30, 2014 -- Updated 1156 GMT (1956 HKT)
Along a winding Chinese mountain road dotted with inns and restaurants is Jinan Orphanage, a place of refuge and site for troubled parents to dump unwanted children.
June 26, 2014 -- Updated 0836 GMT (1636 HKT)
CNN's Kristie Lu Stout invites Isaac Mao, Han Dongfang, and James Miles to discuss the rise of civil society in China and social media's crucial role.
June 26, 2014 -- Updated 0334 GMT (1134 HKT)
Chen Guangbiao wants rich people to give more to charity and he'll do anything to get their attention, including buying lunch for poor New Yorkers.
June 26, 2014 -- Updated 1144 GMT (1944 HKT)
Architects are planning to build the future world's tallest towers in China. They're going to come in pretty colors.
June 23, 2014 -- Updated 1147 GMT (1947 HKT)
Anna Coren visits Yulin's annual dog meat festival. Dogs are part of the daily diet here, with an estimated 10,000 dogs killed for the festival alone.
June 19, 2014 -- Updated 0638 GMT (1438 HKT)
People know little about sex, but are having plenty of it. We take a look at the ramifications of a lack of sex education in China.
June 13, 2014 -- Updated 0812 GMT (1612 HKT)
Hong Kongers have reacted angrily to a Chinese government white paper affirming Beijing's control over the territory.
The emphasis on national glory -- rather than purely personal achievement -- is key.
June 16, 2014 -- Updated 1614 GMT (0014 HKT)
A replica of the Effel Tower in Tianducheng, a luxury real estate development located in Hangzhou, east China's Zhejiang province.
What's the Eiffel Tower doing in China? Replica towns of the world's most famous monuments spring up all over China.
June 11, 2014 -- Updated 0013 GMT (0813 HKT)
Rapid development hasn't just boosted the economy -- it has opened up vast swathes of the country, says a man who has spent much of his life exploring it.
June 10, 2014 -- Updated 0654 GMT (1454 HKT)
The World Cup is apparently making a lot of people "ill" in China.
ADVERTISEMENT