A man has shared the fascinating story of how he took it upon himself to go on a hunt mission after witnessing his father’s murder at the hands of a neighbor when he was 9-years-old.
Xiang Mingqian, a Chinese national said he dropped out of school and spent the next 17 years trying to catch the culprit.
Looking back on that fateful day of August 9, 2000, Mingqian recounted how it all started with a playful throwing of stones with his neighbour.
He was playing with his neighbor, Zhang Jun in a ditch, by the side of an old road in Changba Town, Zhenxiong County and Jun had thrown a stone into a puddle, the splash had hit Xiang Mingqian, so he decided to return the favor by throwing an even bigger stone into the water.
It was just a childish game, but the quarrel that ensued between the two boys would eventually involve both their families and result in a tragic death.
After Mingqian and Jun got into a fight, the latter called his grandmother and she started pushing the former around.
The physical exchange was overheard by Xiang’s older sister, who lived nearby, and when she came out to see what was happening, she ended up being beaten by Jun’s family.
On getting home, she told her young husband what had happened.
Xiang parents were away to buy a new TV set when the entire drama was taking place, so when they came home, the boy didn’t tell them about it, but as they were having dinner that night, his older sister stormed in and told her father that her husband had gone to the other boy’s house to demand an explanation for her bruises.
Mingqian’s father, Xiang Wenzhi abandoned the food, grabbed a flashlight, put on his coat and went to help his son-in-law.
The man who spent 17 years chasing after his dad’s killer recalls seeing his father go into Zhang’s house, and then a couple of minutes later the light bulb going off.
As everything went dark, he could hear his father’s screams as he was stabbed several times by Zhang’s family members. Despite rushing him to the town hospital, Wenzhi’s wounds were too severe, and doctors could do nothing to save him.
The deceased man’s family notified local police about the killing that very night, but they only showed up at the scene of the crime the next morning.
Officers called the subjects in for questioning, but made no arrests, and Zhang Mouqui, who had landed the killing blows, used this opportunity to escape. Shortly after, the police dropped the case, seeing they could no longer locate the main suspect.
After his father’s death, Xiang Mingqian’s life took a turn for the worse, as there was no one to support the family anymore. He started selling noodles to help put food on the table, and despite doing very well in school, he dropped out to dedicate his life to catching his father’s killer.
Seeing that his father’s killer was still at large, Mingqian decided it was up to him to set things right since his mother was busy providing for them and his two siblings could not do anything.
He started visiting the local police station asking for information about Zhang Mouqui. In order to make the hunt easier, the family moved from Changba Town to the county capital when the boy was only 10-years-old.
After many years with no hope of catching the killer as his whereabouts remained unknown, Xiang Mingqian’s still he never gave up, and in 2007, he received the first of three important tip-offs.
Someone told him that a man who fit the culprits description had been seen riding a motorcycle at at Kunming Railway Station. Xiang Mingqian spent several days watching and lokking in every corner of the station, but didn’t find anything useful.
Then, in 2013, Xiang received another information that Zhang might be hiding at an industrial park in Jinjiang, Fujian Province. He traveled to the location, but after six months of searching, he once again found nothing.
Finally, in 2017, after returning home, Xiang learned from a reliable source that Zhang Mouqui was hiding in Nan’an City, Fujian Province. He traveled thousands of kilometers again.
Xiang had information that his father’s killer worked at a tableware factory on the outskirts of Nan’an City. He rented a car, and made a few inquiries about Zhang or the factory, and then spent days watching the entrance to the tableware factory.
He spent three days watching the factory, and on the third day, after 17 long years, he finally saw Zhang Mouqui again.
He had been carrying a photo of his father’s killer around with him since the day he was killed in 2000, and Zhang looked the same except he was only a bit older.
Instead of pouncing on the man that had ruined his life, Xiang asked around about him and learned that he had changed his name to Shao Liang, had met a woman, married her and even had a child.
After gathering all the evidence, including his father’s knife-pierced clothes, Xiang Mingqian finally went to the police, but rather than being assisted, the officers told him they had no record of a Zhang Mouqui.
He later learned that back authorities had erased Zhang record in 2015, as his family reported him missing or dead after having not heard from him in over a decade and a half. Xiang who was outraged wasted no time in contacting the relevant authorities and, based on his evidence, managed to obtain a warrant for Mouqui’s arrest.
On October 10, 2018, the Intermediate People’s Court of Zhaotong City, Yunnan Province, found Zhang Mouqui guilty of Xiang Wenzhi’s death and sentenced him to life in prison and the deprivation of political rights.
After 17 years and 4 days, Xiang Mingqian had finally done what he had set out to do when his faher got killed.
At 26, Xiang Mingqian is ready to finally start living his life. He has a girlfriend, but because of lack of time and money, he never even considered getting married. But he seeks to consider it now.