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Police detained driver after spree kills 5

POLICE have detained Zhang Mingbao who killed five people and injured four others in a wild driving spree on Tuesday night in downtown Nanjing.

A pregnant woman was one of five people killed and though doctors tried fought to save her unborn baby the child died, Yangtze Evening News reported today.

Zhang's blood alcohol level was nearly four times than legal limit, police said.

Zhang told police he had had some wine on Tuesday night and drove home along Jinsheng Road. The car went out of control, smashing into nine pedestrians and six parked cars.

"I feel as if I am a butcher. I'm so sorry for them and so afraid now," Zhang told police. He said he would try his best to compensate them, even selling his cars and house.

Zhang has three other cars. He got his driving license on May, 2006. By April this year, he had been reported for more than 80 traffic offences, 39 for speeding.

Zhang is a construction team boss and lives in Jingang Garden near the scene. Although Zhang has been heavily criticized by the public, his neighbors say he is a good man.
Neighbors say Zhang and his wife are honest, their son is well educated and Zhang works hard and buying all the properties himself.

His only fault is being addicted to wine, an elderly neighbor said.

Zhang could face the death penalty if he is charged with endangering public safety through dangerous means, lawyer Rao Fengbin and professor Zhang Fuyou from Nanjing University said. For this crime he would be jailed for at least 10 years.

But if he is charged with dangerous driving, he may receive a prison sentence of up to seven years. So far police have not said for which crime Zhang has been detained.
Zhang also faces paying out at least 2 million yuan (US$294,118) in compensation, lawyer Dong Yunchun said.


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