A video posted online of a man allegedly assaulting his wife spurred police in China into action – only to discover that the man was already in custody.
The video of the attack was posted online on China’s Twitter-like Weibo service on Tuesday by a user called Wangluo Baoli, or Internet Leopard Force, and has had more than 18 million views.
In the video, the man beats and kicks the woman in what appears to be their home while a toddler looks on. The toddler begins crying and tries to intervene in the assault, which takes place over about a minute.
The footage was filmed on a phone set up by the woman before the man entered the room.
Internet users responded to the video by demanding that the man be locked up, prompting public security officials in Shantou, Guangdong province, to begin an investigation.
“Please lock this man up for life!” one Weibo user wrote.
But police in Jiangmen, also in Guangdong province, said in a statement that the 43-year-old man, surnamed Chen, was taken into custody on the weekend after the woman called police from hospital.
The alleged attack took place on Friday, the statement said.
Shanghai-based news outlet Thepaper.cn quoted an unidentified township official where the couple lived as saying the woman sustained three broken ribs in the assault and was being treated in a hospital in Guangzhou.
China’s law against domestic violence came into effect in March 2016 and prohibits any form of abuse, including psychological abuse. It also helped streamline the process for obtaining restraining orders.
A survey by All-China Women’s Federation in 2015 said about a quarter of all families experience some form of violence in the home. Most of the victims are children and women, who call police for help after an average of 35 incidents of abuse.
This article Domestic violence in the spotlight in attack caught on camera in China first appeared on South China Morning Post