Another man in China ran over a five-year-old boy – and then reversed over him to make sure he was dead in an apparent attempt to avoid footing hospital bills for the child.
The sickening incident happened in Luzhou, western China, when driver Ao Yong hit Xiong Maoke as he left home to walk to school.
Witness Zhang Shifen said: ‘I saw the truck move back a little and then move forward again. Xiong became wrapped up in the wheel and the truck continued forward another ten yards.’
Other passers-by said the driver jumped from his cab after hitting the boy. They claimed Yong then asked: ‘How much shall I pay?’
Police said Yong, a 35-year-old lorry driver from Luxian, argued with the boy’s family about the size of the damages for seven hours.
After the latest incident, Yong denied reversing over the boy to kill him. Last night, police and government staff insisted Xiong died on impact.
Their investigation ruled that Yong was the first person to call the police after his truck hit the boy in the village of Yunfeng, in Luzhou, Sichuan province.
They said his body was not removed immediately because angry villagers were demanding instant compensation from the driver.
In heartrending scenes, the boy’s mother sat shocked next to the covered body of her five-year-old son.
A string of such horrific cases have led to soul-searching in China, where the economic boom has been blamed for fuelling materialism at the cost of compassion.
Handing over compensation if an accident victim dies is seen by many Chinese as cheaper than paying for lengthy hospital treatment. The Communist regime does not provide free healthcare for its 1.3billion citizens.