Deng, 21, a hotel waitress from Hubei, killed 44 year-old party official Deng Guida, with a fruit knife on May 10 when he forced himself on her in a hotel bathing area. She injured another official who tried to assault her. She then turned to the police for help.
Police detained her for murder, but her story spread and brought an outpouring of support and sympathy on the internet from people all over the mainland, who and criticised the dead official for being immoral and Badong police for what many saw as an unjust charge. As a result the police released her under house arrest.
Yesterday a Badong court sentenced her for “excessive use of force”, but freed her because she acted out of self-defence and also because – according to court officials – the girl suffers “"a certain level of mental disorder”. Judges maintain the fact she turned to the police belies her guilt.
Activists who support the girl are happy she was not arrested but describe her sentencing “in just”. The charge aims to please both the authorities in judging the girl guilty; and the general public who view Deng Yujiao as heroic.