SHIJIAZHUANG, Hebei: A 23-year-old man who tried to protect his mother from a snatch thief at a market in northern China was fatally stabbed on Saturday (Sep 8).
According to a report from thepaper.cn, Mr Zhai Jiacheng had accompanied his mother to the Shijiazhuang vegetable market in Hebei province as she was threatened by a snatch thief just three days earlier at the same market.
Mrs Zhai Caofang - who runs a village grocery store with her son - usually brings about 2,000 yuan (US$290) with her to the market, which she frequents regularly to purchase inventory.
Mrs Zhai and her family - including her disabled husband, her son and his wife and two-year-old daughter - depend on their village store for a living.
At the market, Mr Zhai saw the snatch thief try to grab his mother's bag and managed to push him away, according to thepaper.cn report.
The attacker, a 31-year-old man, then took out a knife and approached them again.
Using his body to protect his mother, Mr Zhai dragged her behind him. The man subsequently stabbed Mr Zhai several times.
The suspect was apprehended after passers-by and nearby vendors subdued him.
A man who had a stall at the market was also stabbed during the incident and is now under intensive care at a hospital, although he is reportedly out of danger.
Police said the snatch thief has been detained and is under investigation for murder.
"I told him to run, but he didn't run and he dragged me behind him," Mrs Zhai said of her son's actions.
"My child has never fought before. He didn't hide, and just stood in front of me to protect me. I saw that man stab my son a few times, and he fell clutching his chest."
According to the report, members of the public who have heard about the family's plight have raised at least 2,000 yuan in donations.