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Court lets stab waitress walk free

THE waitress who stabbed a township official to death has been allowed to walk free because of her mental illness and the fact that she surrendered to police immediately after the incident.

The Badong County People's Court in Hubei Province, which heard the case today, issued its judgment at 11am saying Deng Yujiao was guilty of assault and battery but was exempted from penalties because the case involved an excessive use of self defense and the fact that she was mentally unsound at the time.

A psychological assessment earlier diagnosed the 21-year-old waitress with mental illness and said she was not in a stable condition during the incident.

Deng Yujiao, 21, fatally stabbed Deng Guida and injured Huang Dezhi, two township officials of Badong County, after she refused their demands for sex on May 10 at the Xiongfeng Hotel's leisure center.

The two men reportedly pushed and insulted her before she stabbed them.

Deng Yujiao gained wide public sympathy and support around the country and was granted bail on May 26.

Fans have portrayed Deng Yujiao as a folk hero who lashed out against injustice and have posted songs and poems praising her online.

The All-China Women's Federation also expressed concern about her case.

Lawyers volunteered to represent her and the public support even prompted the local government to take the extraordinary step of posting a statement online promising she would receive fair treatment.

Deng's popularity reflects widespread anger over corruption and the abuse of power by some government officials.

The waitress's story prompted loads of supportive posts on Websites.

One web user, WarriorAngel, called Deng "the best girl on the planet." Another, Noble Law, described her as "beautiful and fierce."


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