China / Society

Female driver blamed online after being beaten up for abrupt lane changes

By Liu Jing ( Updated: 2015-05-06 17:51

Female driver blamed online after being beaten up for abrupt lane changes

This screen shot from the video recorded by another driver shows the male driver kicking the woman violently.

The latest online poll shows that the female driver who was brutally beaten by a man for lane changes has lost public support as 78 percent of netizens believe that she should be held accountable for her bitter experience.

Footage showing the woman, surnamed Lu, being violently beaten by a man in Chengdu, Sichuan province, has triggered outrage after being uploaded on Sunday.

The 35-second video filmed on May 3 by another driver shows the man, surnamed Zhang, who drove a red Volkswagen, dragging the female motorist out of her red Hyundai sedan before throwing her to the ground and kicking her multiple times.

Lu suffered a concussion, bone fractures and severe bruising and was sent to a hospital.

Zhang also was reported to have injured a taxi driver who tried to stop him from leaving the spot after the violent act.

Later, the attacker told authorities that he assaulted the woman after she changed lanes abruptly and scared his child in the car.

The man soon met with overwhelming criticism from Internet users, who described him as "lunatic","psycho" and "barbarous".

“The man shouldn't resort to violence no matter what the woman did. All citizens should obey the law but not every one has the right to execute the law, or our society will become a mess," Sina Weibo user @Wojiaomeidonggua said.

However, public opinion soon took a U-turn when footage from the dashboard camera on Zhang's car went viral on the Internet on Tuesday.

The three-minute-long video shows the female driver suddenly crossing lanes in front of the Zhang's car twice and the two exchanging angry remarks before both vehicles came to a stop near an overpass on Chengdu's Third Ring Road, where Zhang viciously kicked Lu.


Some people began to defend the deeds of the male driver, arguing the woman violated traffic regulations first.

@DuboDennis wrote that everyone would be angered by what the woman did because her driving shows she was taking others' lives for granted.

@suilexiaozhangzhang said the woman should think about why she was beaten and added,"She shouldn't have crossed the lane in front of other cars, which was a threat to the lives of others."

Although 78 percent of people blame the female driver for the road rage, most of the netizens said they wouldn't use violence to answer such deeds, according to the poll conducted by

The debate further grew when some netizens started a cyber hunt against the woman, releasing her personal information, including her ID number, hotel check-in records and more than 20 recorded traffic violations in the same Hyundai sedan.

“The search for the car's traffic violations is acceptable, but is her hotel check-in records even relevant here?" @ziyueyzy said. The hunt was considered by many netizens to have gone too far.

Zhang Zhen, a lawyer with the Huicheng law firm, said in a report by Sichuan Online that, judging by the video from Zhang's dash board, the woman did violate traffic regulations.

However, the attacker should also face a penalty for his violent deeds. And the online hunters are suspected of infringing the woman's right to privacy, the lawyer said.

The attacker has been detained on criminal charges, local police said.

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