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UPDATED: 16:01, July 29, 2004
Zhao Yan's psychic trauma hard to heal
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Zhao Yan, a businesswoman from Tianjin who was savagely beaten by a US border inspector, was given treatment in a physiotherapy center in the Queens Boulevard of Queens, New York as of July 26. Zhao Yan states that she can endure physical pains, but the damage of personal dignity and mental scars, and humiliation and injury are hard to recover.

Photo:Zhao Yan meets the media in New York
Zhao Yan meets the media in New York

Wounds remain serious after five days
Relevant personnel witness that there are serious extravasated blood in victim Zhao Yan's eyes, and obvious swellings and traumas on her face, neck, head and other parts. Zhao Yan says: "Although five days have passed, my whole body still aches fiercely in many parts, and even the use of pain-killer is ineffective, and this is often accompanied by syndromes like nerve paralysis and immovability of many parts of her body."

Zhao says that she not only feels nauseated, has headache and is unable to sleep, but also suffers aching even when drinking water because one of her teeth was broken and thus baring the dental nerve. Zhao's friend Jennifer expresses: "I've never seen any other person who is so severely beaten by police. The pressing task at the moment is to give Zhao Yan medical tretment, and the most important thing is to help her regain health."

Zhao says to "New York Daily News": "The humiliation I suffered from being beaten by the policeman far outweighs my physical pain. As a career woman, I was very confident in the past, but now my confidence has all gone. I'm now living in my friend's apartment which is on the 25th floor, sometimes, I really want to jump out."

She adds: "I used to think that American police are handsome, tall and strong. But I've never thought that they would resort to such brutal violence on a woman. It is already cruel to spray me with liquid pepper, why did they even beat me violently?"

Zhao angry with suspected who tells lies
While he was inquired by officials with the US Department of Homeland Security, Robert Rhodes, the US white policeman who beat Zhao, said that his arm was scratched by Zhao. In a written statement, Rhodes said that he was at that time interrogating a drug smuggler in a white room under the Rainbow Bridge on the US-Canada border. Later when he attempted to take Zhao Yan back to the white room, Zhao swung her arm and scratched his arm, and then they both fell to the ground.

Zhao protests furiously: "The policeman is lying, have a look at me, and you will know." Zhao said that having been beaten by the policeman, she now suffers from unbearable headache everyday, and she is always troubled by nightmare whenever she goes to bed, thus making it simply impossible for her to take a rest, moreover, the US policeman's sophistical reasoning after beating her makes Zhao deeply angered.

Photo:Chinese businesswoman Zhao Yan gives a detailed account of a US inspector beating her in his lawyer's office in New York, July 23.(Xinhua Photo)
Chinese businesswoman Zhao Yan gives a detailed account of a US inspector beating her in his lawyer's office in New York, July 23.(Xinhua Photo)
Zhao recalls: "That policeman, with one hand, beckoned me to go over there, while sprayed me with liquid pepper with another hand. My eyes, hair, face and neck were sprayed successively, and then I fell to the ground, and was surrounded by at least three policemen, they kicked me on the face and body with their leather shoes. My eyes were so swollen that I simply couldn't open them, and one of my teeth was broken, my skin was in great pain, I thought I was dying at that time, so how could I attack the police?"

Senior Special Agent Steven MacMartin with the US Department of Homeland Security points out in the testimony that he has carefully inspected the so-called scratch of Rhodes only to find a small red impress on the arm without any sign of bloodshed. Both Rossel and Himan, two policemen on duty with Rhodes on the same day, said that they saw Rhodes kicking Zhao's head. Rossel said that he saw Rhodes holding her hair and striking her head against the ground fiercely. He immediately stopped Rhodes from beating at that time. Hinman expressed that she witnessed Rhodes knee Zhao's head at least three times and strike her head on the ground. She yelled to Rhodes: "Stop!"

Investigation begins and the whole truth will be out
At present, New York State Office of Immigration has transferred this case to New York Western District Court located in the City of Buffalo. The US Federal Government has showed clearly that it will bear all the litigation costs of Zhao Yan in America. The Chinese Foreign Ministry attaches great important to the case of a Chinese citizen beaten by an officer with the US Immigration Services.

Martin Feld, assistant procurator of New York Western District Court who is in charge of this case, expresses that the court has arrested Rhodes who took the lead in beating Zhao Yan, and charged him with "the crime of injuring an ordinary person", and if convicted, he would face 10 years of imprisonment and be fined US$250,000. Lawyer Reagan also disclosed that Rhodes had previous convictions of injuring other innocent people during his term of serving as a policeman.

The US Department of State indicates that, the US Department of Homeland Security is looking into the case of Chinese citizen Zhao Yan being beaten up by officer with Immigration Office on the US-Canada border. A US procuratorial organ has instituted prosecution against the suspected person beating Zhao Yan.

Ereli, deputy Spokesman of US Department of State said at a regular press conference held by the Department of State on July 26: "The Department of Homeland Security is carrying out investigation into this case. We are expecting that truth about the case will come out as soon as possible."

Ereli made the above remark after Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing expressed the Chinese government's special concern over this incident in his telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Colin Powel on July 26, Beijing time. At the press conference, when asked whether this officer would be punished for beating the Chinese citizen, he said: "We devote our efforts basically to investigation, and try to find out the truth about the matter."

It is reported that Zhao Yan has got temporary medical subsidy from the US Government. As an important witness, she will legally be permitted to stay in the United States, waiting that the case will be finally unraveled.

By People's Daily Online

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