Police Claim Violent Death of School Principal Was Suicide

The body of Wang Jizhen, a school principal in Shanxi.


From Sina:

Shanxi School Principal Tied in Steel Wire/Cable Determined to be Suicide, Cause of Death Not Yet Investigated

Xinhuanet.com Taiyuan November 2 report (reporter Hu Jingguo, Sun Liangquan) — In September of this year, when Shanxi province Luliang city Shilou county middle school principal Wang Jizhen was discovered underneath a bridge over the Yellow River having suffered a violent death, the local police’s continuous refusal to open a case [criminal investigation] has the public asking questions. Recently, the Shanxi province Luliang City News Office and Luliang City Public Security Bureau have said that after reviewing the evidence, they have not found evidence that a crime has been committed, and have ruled out homicide in the death of Wang Jizhen, determining it to be a suicide.

On September 3rd of this year, Wang Jizhen was discovered dead near the Xinguan Bridge in Shilou county, his body bound by a 6-meter long “rusty” steel cable/wire. Three days later, the other scene/location in this case was discovered, a scene with large bloodstains, a kitchen knife, and other material evidence. As a result, relatives suspected that Wang Jizhen had been murdered and his body dumped. Afterward, local police got involved in the investigation, but based on “not finding evidence of a homicide”, they’ve continuously refused to open a [murder] case, therefore inciting intense suspicion from society [the public].

Wang Jizhen was the principal of a middle school in Shilou county, as well as the Vice Bureau Director of the Shilou County Education Bureau, responsible for the Shilou county’s 50 million [RMB] vocational school construction project. The motive for his death [wanting to kill him, or wanting to kill himself] has also attracted attention locally.

Police claim that after they received the report [of the body/death] on September 3rd, police officers from Shilou county Public Security Bureau and Luliang city Public Security Bureau criminal divisions rushed to the scene and collected the private car the deceased Wang Jizhen drove that day as well as related articles/items left at the scene, at the same time carrying out the other related investigation and evidence-collecting work. On September 6th, at another location in Shilou county Lingquan town Songjiagou village, police discovered bloodstains, a kitchen knife, and a single white shoelace which they cataloged.

A photo provided by an insider shows a large bloodstain on a muddy patch of ground. In the blood stain is a stainless steel kitchen knife. Source: Beijing News
A photo provided by an insider shows a large bloodstain on a muddy patch of ground. In the blood stain is a stainless steel kitchen knife. Source: Beijing News

Police say, after the deceased Wang Jizhen left home and arrived near the Xinguan town Shiqing Yellow River Bridge, he successively made four calls to friends and colleagues, informing his friend to come to the Yellow River bridge to drive his car back home, and exhorting the vice principal to take good care of the school’s matters. That day at 8:40, Wang Jizhen’s friend arrived at the Yellow River bridge, found Wang Jizhen already dead, then informed the work unit, family, and called the police.

Through analysis of surveillance footage and records of the relevant telephone conversations along with on-scene investigations, the Shilou county Public Security Bureau confirmed that the telephone conversations matched what the relevant people involved testified, and that high-resolution surveillance footage fit [the sequence of events]. At the same time, the deceased’s son reported that their home was missing a kitchen knife and shoelace. The characteristics of the kitchen knife described matched the characteristics of the kitchen knife recovered from the scene at Songjiagou, and the missing shoelace was of the same brand as the shoelace recovered from the scene at Songjiagou.

Luliang police also made public the forensics results concerning the circumstances of Wang Jizhen’s death from the Shanxi provincial police forensics center, Luliang municipal police forensics center, and the Shanxi province University of Medicine’s forensics center. In them, the expert opinion was “death by drowning”.

Luliang city Public Security Bureau Chief Quan Zhigao said that the corroboration between witness testimony, surveillance footage, on-scene material evidence, and forensics results provides a complete chain of evidence. Combining all the evidence, there is no indication that a crime occurred, and they have ruled out homicide in Wang Jizhen’s death, determining it to be a suicide. “According the the relevant regulations of criminal procedure, the Shilou county Public Security Bureau have decided not to open a case [criminal investigation] in Wang Jizhen’s death,” he said.

Furthermore, regarding the motive for death that the local public and netizens have been concerned with, Quan Zhigao says Wang Jizhen’s death has been confirmed as a suicide and not a criminal case, and now that the police have lawfully conducted the relevant investigation, any other investigations would infringe upon personal privacy and other problems, as well as do not fall within the scope of police duty, and therefore the police have no investigated the motive and reason for death.

“If the family has a need and obtains approval from the relevant departments, we can assist in the investigation,” Quan Zhigao said.

(Original title: No Case Opened for “Death” of Luliang School Principal Bound in Steel Wire/Cable Questioned, Police Respond That It Was Suicide)

Comments from Sina:

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With this kind of scene, how was it confirmed that it was a suicide? Are they afraid of implicating other cases? Why doesn’t the police open a case/investigation?


Shanxi, this mysterious piece of land!


Lots of suspicious points. There absolutely must be an inside story.


If Di Renjie were alive, he’d definitely be stupefied by this~


Too amazing, even this can be called suicide.


There’s a lot unseen here.


Impressive, truly impressive!


Feels a bit like having gone mad.




Difficulty coefficient 8.9

手机用户[山西太原] (responding to above)

I think it’s a 9.3.

用户5188338101[意大利Lombardia] (responding to above)


手机用户[广东] (responding to above)


Comments from NetEase:

网易河北省石家庄市手机网友 ip:221.192.*.*

This suicide difficulty coefficient sure is high!

很很哇噻的男人 [网易湖南省常德市手机网友]:

If you don’t commit suicide, I’ll have you suicided, haha.

4c76ab6466f9ec97cfb61aac [网易广西贵港市手机网友]:

I remember last time there was even someone who had stabbed himself dozens of times. Incredible, there’s hope/promise.

[Note: May refer to any number of infamous incidents, such as this one involving a Hubei government official or this one involving a university student.]

潇洒的流浪儿 [网易福建省厦门市手机网友]:

This definitely was suicide!!!

网易广东省广州市手机网友 ip:119.130.*.*

Suicide, once again suicide.

江南小肥 [网易江苏省南京市手机网友]:

Suicide with such a high level of difficulty involved, afraid the pain index isn’t high enough???

蒼老师 [网易河北省唐山市手机网友]:

Don’t even need to think about why. It’s like playing a game, going through the motions, and the public and media are already used to it.

网易河北省石家庄市手机网友 ip:221.192.*.*

Committing suicide involving this much complexity? Why not just take a lethal drug/poison and be done with it? So uneducated.

网易北京市手机网友 ip:111.206.*.*

So he wound the wire around his own body and used a kitchen knife to kill himself. Talk about making it hard for the school principal…

网易内蒙古呼和浩特市手机网友 ip:1.28.*.*

Commits suicide, then ties himself up, and then movies his corpse to a second location. What a high difficulty level!

Note: The images below were not included in the Sina, NetEase, or original Xinhua article.

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Written by Fauna

Fauna is a mysterious young Shanghainese girl who lives in the only place a Shanghainese person would ever want to live: Shanghai. In mid-2008, she started chinaSMACK to combine her hobby of browsing Chinese internet forums with her goal of improving her English. Through her tireless translation of popular Chinese internet news and phenomenon, her English has apparently gotten dramatically better. At least, reading and writing-wise. Unfortunately, she's still not confident enough to have written this bio, about herself, by herself.

  • A Gawd Dang Mongolian

    So he hacked away at himself with a kitchen knife while strangling himself with said string. Then just before he blacked out from blood loss, managed to throw himself into the Yellow River and drown.

    Okay I know Chinese need to overachieve in a lot of stuff but even this is eh…

    • Germandude

      Probably an expert in shaolin kung fu…

    • Ken Morgan

      Although I’m not talking about this case. Strange things DO happen. There is an out of print book called Suicide written by Geo Stone. It has been scanned online though. It had in it examples of suicide failure. For instance one person emptied a revolver into his head and didn’t die. He had the faculties left to walk to his shed gather some rope tie a noose throw it over a beam and hang himself. People watch far too many movie where death is instant from being shot. Amazingly British armed police were surprised that shooting people did not make them fall over like the movies too and had to be trained to put multiple rounds in the centre of mass.

      • Boris

        ‘Amazingly British armed police were surprised that shooting people did not make them fall over like the movies too’ – You’d think they would know this, given that plenty of peeps around my way knew this and never fired a gun.

        • Ken Morgan

          It was generally because British criminals were mostly unarmed and would surrender. Through the 80s 90s and early 00s it was extremely rare to hear of the police shooting somebody. It changed around 2005 when they were re-trained to empty the clip into the suspect. There is still bungling incompetence. In 2006 they raided a home and shot

          a suspect who had surrendered and cuffed.

    • mr.wiener

      Well they aren’t the only ones…


  • Zappa Frank

    Chinese police reminds me a lot Italian police…

  • Amused

    Anyone else wondering which cop’s middle school daughter he took to the faculty hotel party?

  • JayJay

    With the conclusion of Boardwalk Empire, there is an unquenched appetite for a similar themed show in China. I can hear opening music looking these pictures… lol

  • David

    You know China is so safe because nobody is ever killed here. However, there must be something in the air that makes so many people commit suicide.

  • AbC

    You forgot to add
    “whilst in the process of throwing himself into the Yellow River, he bound himself with a 6 metre steel wire and cut his own wrist in a particular way where he’ll likely drown first before dying from blood loss”.
    This is no ordinary Mexican or Italian suicide, we’re talking about a 9.5 difficulty suicide here that only can be achieved by a Chinese.

    • Amused

      Dunno man, some of the Mexican suicides are pretty damn hardcore. You try beating yourself to a pulp, cutting your head clean off and then hanging yourself off an overpass by your feet sometime and I bet you’ll think it’s quite difficult. Though I suspect the hardest bit is convincing 3 or 4 friends to do the same thing at the same time with you.
      But then, no one likes dying alone; too quiet.

      • Alex Dương

        But then, no one likes dying alone; too quiet.

        On a separate issue, I feel this is why we seem to have more mass shootings than we used to. “Back in the day,” people who wanted to commit suicide killed themselves by themselves while they were alone. These days, the attitude seems to be “I don’t want to die alone; I’m taking a few people with me.”

        • Amused

          Aside from when they off relatives and friends, I’d say it’s more that they desperately want their departure from the world to be noticed. You never see anyone who is successful and recognized by their peers offing themselves with a shooting spree. But mass media coverage of any shooting guarantees you your fifteen minutes of fame if you go out that way. And since they know they can be famous, even if its famous for being an evil cocksucker, they decide to ruin a bunch of other people’s lives too.
          Of course it could also have something to do with envy for the perceived non-shitty lives of these other people that drives them as well.

      • AbC

        Maybe I should start reading some Mexican news… Didn’t realise ‘suicide’ was so prevalent there.
        I thought the drug cartels couldn’t care less about the law to murder by ‘suicide’.

  • Dolph Grunt

    Another successful investigation comes to a close, courtesy of the savvy officers at CSI: China!

  • lacompacida

    So did the victim tied himself before or after death by cuts ?

    • Alex Dương

      Ngo Dinh Diem says hello.

  • jeffli

    a bit “monty python” isn’t it

    • mr.wiener

      I don’t think it was a cry for help.

  • Don’t Believe the Hype

    “and now that the police have lawfully conducted the relevant investigation, any other investigations would infringe upon personal privacy and other problems, as well as do not fall within the scope of police duty, and therefore the police have no investigated the motive and reason for death.”

    Translation: go f$#k urself, we did it (lawfully) and there is nothing you can do about it

  • Where’s the outrage?
    China is a lamb hotpot yum yum

  • yurah

    Reminds of the banker that committed suicide by shooting himself seven times with a nail gun…

  • Dr Sun

    Flame search revealed that this upstanding school principle and senior CPC member was forcing his pupils to have sex with him.
    he got what he deserved

  • vincent

    CSI : China would be a really boring show…