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February 24, 2010

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Manhunt on for alleged ax killer of 6 in family

POLICE in Lingshou County, Hebei Province, are offering a 10,000 yuan (US$1,465) award for the whereabouts of a man who allegedly axed to death six family members, including a five-month-old girl.

Police said Zhang Erhong, a son-in-law of the victim's family, was the major suspect. He disappeared after the rampage at around 3am on February 10, the Hebei Youth Daily reported yesterday.

Zhang Tangbao, his wife, daughter, and three grand-children were found lying in blood at noon on February 10. They all appeared to have suffered multiple injuries in their head while a blood-stained ax was found in the yard.

The murderer must have attacked them in their sleep, a neighbor told the newspaper. Zhang Tangbao's five-month-old baby girl suffered blows to her head and her back.

Zhang Tangbao's wife apparently was wakened after her husband was killed. She suffered the most cuts as she struggled to protect two sleeping children by covering them with her body.

Villagers nearby said they heard nothing during the night of the murders.

In the village of less than 500 residents, the suspected murderer Zhang Erhong was described by villagers as a violent man with a mask of politeness.

Zhang Erhong allegedly has beaten up his parents-in-law several times and even sent them to hospitals, the newspaper quoted Zhang Tangbao's relatives as saying.


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