China / Society

Gunman opens fire on bustling street

By CAO YIN in Beijing and WEN XINZHENG in Changsha (China Daily) Updated: 2013-01-11 01:18

One man shot another with a self-made gun on a bustling street in Changsha, capital of Hunan province, on Thursday, police said.

The rare shooting sparked debate among local residents as it reminded them of serial killer and robber Zhou Kehua who shot four people dead in the provincial capital between 2009 and 2011.

But the shooting on Thursday was sparked by a financial dispute, the public security bureau in Changsha's Furong district said on its micro blog.

Jiang Xinxiang, a police officer from the bureau, said that the two men have been held and an investigation is ongoing.

"The two men intended to have mediation in court on Thursday morning, but they did not reach an agreement. Then they quarreled fiercely on Wanbao Avenue, a busy street in the city," he said.

Around 10:35 am, Li, 42, drove to the street with several other people, but was stopped by 36-year-old Peng, according to Jiang, who only gave the two men's surnames.

Peng shot at Li's face with a self-made gun, and Li picked up a brick and hit Peng's head, Jiang said.

"Li's facial injury has been determined to be minor, and Peng's injury is not life-threatening," Jiang said.

A cleaner on the street who did not want to be identified said she heard the shot ring out and saw the gunman.

A witness named Zhou said she passed the street when the incident happened and saw a man lying on the ground, his head bleeding.

"I thought it was a robbery at first," she said.

Posts on some websites said the shooting was part of a gang fight, a claim that has not been confirmed by the police.

However, police said they are not sure how many shots were fired, adding that they only found Peng and Li when they reached the scene.

Wang Dawei, a law professor with the People's Public Security University of China, said criminal cases involving guns are rare in China, because the country has strict gun control.

"But some people have self-made guns, which are not easy to find and hard to control."

Wang said ways to shut down illegal gun workshops need to be found.

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