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Compensation released for family of deceased watermelon vendor


09:31, July 21, 2013

CHANGSHA, July 20 (Xinhua) -- The family of a watermelon vendor who died after a violent clash with urban management officers has received 897,000 yuan (146,208 U.S. dollars) in compensation, local authorities said Saturday.

A statement from the Linwu County government said the compensation was released in accordance with relevant laws and regulations to include death compensation, funeral expenses and an award for damages related to emotional distress.

The compensation has been implemented, it said.

Deng Zhengjia, a 56-year-old farmer from Liantang Village, Nanqiang Township of Linwu, died following a physical conflict with urban management officers on Wednesday morning.

The fight occurred after Deng and his wife tried to sell watermelons at a riverside scenic spot where urban management officers had banned such activities, according to Deng's niece.

She cited a witness as saying that Deng was struck by weights from a set of scales, adding that his wife was also injured and is being treated at a local hospital.

The news has made headlines in the media and online, sparking great concern.

An autopsy was conducted on Thursday afternoon in the presence of his family, witnesses and local procuratorate officials, and Deng's body was buried on Thursday evening in accordance with local customs, according to authorities in Chenzhou City.

Police in the city have sent samples from Deng's body to an institution in south China's Guangdong Province, which will further examine the biological materials to determine the cause of death. Local authorities will announce the results once the examination is finished.

The initial investigation described an intracranial injury and soft issue contusions on Deng's body, but further details have yet to be released.

The six urban management officers are suspected of causing intentional injury. They were taken into custody at the detention house in Chenzhou City on Saturday, according to sources with the county government.

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