An eight-year-old boy was allegedly beaten to death by his martial arts instructor the day after he joined the club in China, local media report. The boy, whose name has not been released, joined the Chongde Juying Martial Arts Sports Club in Qingdao, Shandong, on June 17.
Just a day later, his parents, who had paid 7,680 yuan (about 18,000 Mexican pesos) for a year of self-defense classes, received a video of him during training in which he looked “unusually pale.”
His mother noticed that he was covered in bruises, mostly concentrated on his legs.
The trainer informed the father that the boy would be taken to the hospital because he was unresponsive after receiving a blow. The little boy was taken to Chenyang Third People’s Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival after reportedly being beaten by his instructor.
Medical reports seen by the Chinese newspaper The Paper revealed that his heart had stopped beating 20 minutes before arriving at the hospital.
Videos of the incident circulated on social media show the boy collapsed on the ground. Three people linked to the club have been detained, including the couple responsible and a coach, according to the Shenyang branch of the Qingdao Public Security Bureau. They face criminal proceedings for “intentional violence and harm leading to death.”
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A video posted online showed a boy wearing an orange T-shirt with the name of the martial arts club on the back.
The minor collapses as a woman’s voice can be heard saying, “If you keep doing this, your mother has told me she won’t pick you up for a year,” according to The Straits Times.
The boy’s father, Zhai, received a video of his son at around 11 a.m. on June 18 and saw that he was “unusually pale.” The mother criticized the trainers for not taking him to the hospital sooner.
Users of the social network Sina Weibo supported the family and called for greater protection for minors in the face of such tragedies. “I want to see the strictest and harshest punishment for this crime. So many children practice martial arts as a hobby. According to the Global Times newspaper, this kind of thing should not happen, said one of the users.
The martial arts club was only registered in April. However, as investigations began, authorities decided to suspend the operation of the place.