encouraging a suicidal 19-year-old girl to throw herself off a building in the Gansu city of Qingyang last week.ultiple people have reportedly been detained for
As the girl, surnamed Li, stood on the 9th-floor ledge, hundreds of people gathered below to watch what would happen. After hours went by and Li still remained on the ledge, some in the crowd reportedly started to get impatient, shouting “Jump quickly!” and “How have you not jumped yet!”
Some onlookers also filmed videos of the suicidal young woman, uploading them to social media with vile captions such as “I waited an hour under the sun for you to jump off the building” and “Jump quickly, I have to go pick up my kids.”
After four hours, Li lowered herself down and began hanging by her fingertips from the ledge. Then, refusing rescuers’ desperate pleas, she let go. In video of that moment, the firefighter trying to save the young woman’s life can be heard crying out in agony while the crowd below gasps and shouts, before cheering and applauding after she hits the ground.
On Weibo, many netizens accused those in the crowd of effectively nudging Li off the ledge. “The onlookers who amused themselves were the ones who extinguished the last hope in the woman’s heart,” state-run tabloid the Global Times quotes one netizen as writing.
In the aftermath of Li’s tragic suicide making headlines across China, multiple onlookers who urged the woman to jump and uploaded footage online were detained, reports Btime.com, adding that police are currently investigating the matter. It’s not clear what crime these individuals may be charged with. In its report, the Global Times accuses them of being “disrespectful to life.”
Sadly, this is not the first incident of its kind to occur in China. Back in 2015, a group of people assembled on the street below a Shenyang high-rise where a half-naked woman was considering leaping from a 10th-floor window. “Jump quickly! I’m so tired of waiting,” one of them urged while whistling.
The year before, an indebted woman who’d climbed to the top of a building in Shaanxi province and threatened to jump to her death was prodded on by a group of school kids who stood below yelling “Hurry up and jump for us!”
According to Li’s father, Li had been severely depressed for the last two years after being sexually assaulted by her teacher. She left behind a heart-wrenching, six-page, handwritten letter accusing her teacher and asking for justice.
In the letter, Li says that on September 5th, 2016, when she was 17 years old, she went to her school’s medical room after being troubled by a stomachache. Li’s teacher, surnamed Wu, went to check on her in the resting area and took the opportunity to inappropriately touch her face, kiss her mouth, and bite her ear. He then continued to touch her lower back and rip off some of her clothes. Luckily, another teacher walked into the medical room and Li was sent back to her dorm.
The school apparently tried to sweep the incident under the rug. In the aftermath, Wu was demoted, received some unspecified disciplinary action, and was ordered to apologize to Li, but was kept on as a teacher. Meanwhile, the school offered Li’s family 350,000 yuan if they would waive their right to sue Wu. Li’s father turned down the offer.
However, going to the police proved similarly unhelpful with a court deciding not to charge Wu with any crime, reasoning that there was not sufficient evidence and that the teacher’s actions were “not severe.” Wu was released after 10 days of detention, claiming that he had only touched Li in the process of giving her a “physical check-up.”
After that, Li stopped her pursuit of justice. She suffered from depression and from PTSD. She had twice tried to kill herself by swallowing pills before finally ending her life last Wednesday. Her last words to the firefighter trying to save her life were: “Brother, thank you, I want to go to heaven.”
– Do not leave the person alone
– Remove any sharp objects, alcohol, drugs or firearms that could be used in a suicide attempt
– Take the person to an emergency room or seek help from a medical or mental health professional
– Call the following hotlines for help: Lifeline Shanghai: 021-6279-8990 (English speakers; 10am – 10pm daily); HopeLine: 4001619995 (Chinese speakers; 24/7 toll-free access)