China News Service, Beijing, December 31 (Peng Ningling) On the 31st, the Sichuan Provincial Higher People's Court issued a public sentence on the retrial of the defendant Zhang Zhijun's intentional homicide, and sentenced Zhang Zhijun to death for intentional homicide, depriving him of political rights for life.

After the retrial was amended on the morning of the 31st, Yang Likun (pseudonym), the second uncle of the victim Zou Yang (pseudonym), said that the family members were very satisfied with the retrial judgment, "it is the result we have been looking forward to."

The victim Zou Yang (pseudonym) and his wife's family.

Photo courtesy of the victim's family

Judgment discloses the process of committing the crime

  According to Yang Likun, on the morning of the 31st, he went to Mianyang Prison in Sichuan with two other close relatives of the victim and attorney attorney to participate in the retrial of the "father-in-law murdered son-in-law's family of three".

  The court found that in June 2013, Zhang Zhijun's daughter Zhang (Zhang Yun) married the victim Zou.

In July 2017, during Zhang's pregnancy, the family and parents of both parties became unhappy due to life trivial matters, and then the conflicts continued to deepen.

Since October 2017, Zou and Zhang have left home to live in a rented house after a quarrel.

  On January 9, 2019, Zou's parents came to Chengdu from other provinces to spend the Spring Festival with their son and visit their granddaughter.

  The next day, Zou and his three parents came to the house. They had a dispute with Zhang’s parents, Zhang Zhijun and Yao because of their children. Zhang Zhijun stabbed Zou and his mother with a knife, causing Zou and his mother to die on the spot.

Zou's father was sent to the hospital and died the next day.

After Zhang Zhijun committed the crime, he notified Zhang to call 110 for the police and 120 for emergency.

After receiving the report, the police took Zhang Zhijun away from the scene for investigation.

Before the incident, Zou Yang had a birthday cake on the table in the rented house.

Photo courtesy of the victim's family

Responding to multiple points of dispute:

Can the defendant’s daughter’s letter of understanding allow him to be given a lighter punishment?

  It has been nearly three years since the incident occurred. In December 2019, the Chengdu Intermediate Court of Sichuan Province convicted Zhang Zhijun of intentional homicide, sentenced him to death, and deprived him of political rights for life.

After Zhang Zhijun filed an appeal, in October 2020, the Sichuan Provincial Higher People's Court sentenced Zhang Zhijun to death, suspended for two years, and deprived of political rights for life.

  According to the judgment of the second instance, the Sichuan Provincial High Court believed that Zhang Zhijun did surrender, voluntarily confessed guilt, the victim’s relatives’ understanding and other statutory and discretionary circumstances. In addition, from Zhang Zhijun’s subjective viciousness, “it is not a crime with extremely bad motives. The purpose is extremely despicable, and it is not enough for civilians not to kill."

  The revised judgment of the second instance once caused social controversy, and many people in the legal profession also hold different opinions on the subjective and malignant aspects.

  On April 30 this year, the Sichuan Provincial Higher People's Court decided to initiate trial and supervision procedures in accordance with the law on Zhang Zhijun's intentional homicide.

On August 20, the case was retrial in Mianyang, Sichuan.

On the afternoon of December 23, the lawyer representing the victim’s family received a notice from the Sichuan Higher People’s Court regarding the retrial of the case.

  According to the retrial judgment, the victim was directly responsible for the intensification of the contradiction regarding the passionate crime committed in the second-instance judgment due to “robbing of children”. The Sichuan Provincial Higher People’s Court found that the three victims had assaulted Yao Mo. There are witnesses Yao Moumou, Zhang Yun’s testimony, and Zhang Zhijun’s confession. The three are interested parties. Zhang Yun’s testimony is based on what Yao Moumou said, and combined with the evidence in the case, it cannot be determined that the victim has assaulted Yao Moumou. It was confirmed that the three victims had preparations or plans to take the children.

  The Sichuan Provincial High Court held that Zhang Zhijun’s family disputes with his daughter should have been treated correctly and rationally, but he was narrow and extreme. In order to prevent the victim from holding the child, he resorted to extreme methods to commit murder without restraint.

Zhang Zhijun and his defenders mentioned that Zou Yang and other victims beat Yao Moumou after entering the house and robbed Zou Moumou, and the defense and defense opinions of the intensification of the contradiction are not valid and shall not be adopted.

  Regarding the “Letter of Understanding” that has attracted much attention in the revised judgment of the second instance, the retrial of the Sichuan Provincial High Court found that during the original second instance, the victim Zou Yang’s wife Zhang Yun (pseudonym) issued a letter of understanding in the name of herself and her daughter Zou Moumou, stating that Forgive Zhang Zhijun.

  The Sichuan Provincial Higher People’s Court believes that the relationship between Zhang Yun and Zhang Zhijun is not between the victim’s close relatives and the defendant in a general sense. Zhang Yun is both the daughter of Zhang Zhijun and Zou Yang’s wife. He has close relatives of the defendant and the victim Zou The dual identities of Yang's close relatives, when Zhang Yun issued the letter of understanding, Zhang Yun's daughter Zou was only 2 years old and had no ability to express.

Although Zhang Yun issued a letter of understanding in the name of himself and his daughter Zou Moumou, other close relatives of the victim resolutely refused to understand Zhang Zhijun and strongly demanded severe punishment in accordance with the law. Therefore, in light of the specific circumstances of the case, Zhang Zhijun should not be punished lightly Therefore, the defense opinions of Zhang Zhijun and his defenders that they have been forgiven by the victim’s close relatives and should be given a lighter punishment cannot be established.

  According to the judgment of the retrial, the Sichuan Provincial Higher People's Court held that Zhang Zhijun, the defendant in the original trial, could not correctly handle the family disputes with his daughter, stabbed others with a sharp knife, and caused the death of the three victims. His actions constituted the crime of intentional homicide.

Zhang Zhijun took the initiative to surrender and truthfully confessed the main facts of the crime. He surrendered.

Zhang Zhijun's criminal methods are cruel, the circumstances are bad, and the consequences are particularly serious. The crimes committed are extremely serious and should be punished in accordance with the law.

Although he surrendered himself, it was not enough to give him a lighter punishment.

  The Sichuan Provincial Higher People’s Court mentioned that the original second-instance judgment was not comprehensive enough in its analysis of partial evidence. It determined that the victim was directly responsible for the intensification of the contradiction and that Zhang Zhijun’s understanding of the victim’s relatives was incorrect, which led to the improper sentencing of Zhang Zhijun. Correct it in accordance with the law.

After the verdict of the retrial, Zou Yang's cousin posted a Weibo.

Victim's family members: long-awaited results

  After the sentence was pronounced, the victim’s family said in an interview with Chinanews that the family had been looking forward to the result for a long time.

"Not only did justice be done, but also the mood of the victim's family was soothed."

  According to Yang Likun, on the 31st, the defendant Zhang Zhijun’s side was the only one who participated in the sentencing of his defense lawyers. He did not see his wife or daughter. After hearing the judgment of the retrial, Zhang Zhijun “had no response”.

  Hou Shichao, the attorney representing the victim’s close relatives, said that this judgment is the final judgment and is currently only waiting for the Sichuan High Court to report to the Supreme People’s Court for approval.

  As the lawyer representing the case, Hou Shichao believes that parents should respect their children’s marriage and not interfere too much. Disputes between their children’s marriages should be persuaded and excessive improper interference should be reduced.

"Spouses should understand the normal work of their spouses, give each other sufficient understanding, support and consideration, and respect their spouses and their family members."

  For the family, the next most important thing is to bury the three victims.

The victim’s close relatives stated that they had contacted Zhang Yun before, hoping that the other party would assist in the burial of Zou Yang and others, but the other party did not respond.

  Before the deadline for publication, Chinanews.com contacted Zhang Yun by phone many times, but the call was not connected.

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