Police in China fatally shoot man seeking aid for family

AP News
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Posted: May 06, 2015 5:30 AM

BEIJING (AP) — Chinese police fatally shot a man in northern China who was on his way to Beijing to ask the central government to help house and take care of his sons and elderly mother, police and a lawyer said Wednesday.

The man's relatives received approval for the aid three days after the Saturday killing, the newspaper Southern Metropolis Daily said.

Lawyer Xie Yanyi, who is working with Xu Chenhe's family on the case, said Xu, his mother and three sons were on their way to the capital when train station security officers in Harbin recognized them and barred them from buying tickets.

The family had visited Beijing several times seeking aid, and local media had reported their case. Local officials often try to block such trips to avoid drawing scrutiny from central authorities.

Southern Metropolis said Xu reacted violently to the police action and reached for a policeman's gun. Xie said witness videos contradict that account.

Poor Chinese often travel to the capital to attempt to petition national authorities about land seizures, labor disputes and other issues after making little progress with local officials. Southern Metropolis said Xu had been trying for years to place his mother in a public nursing home and board his sons at a state-run juvenile facility.

His sons will now be placed in a public orphanage, the newspaper reported.