Youku video for those in China after the jump. UPDATES below.
A lot of anodyne videos pass through my inbox, from travel companies and tourists at the Great Wall and musical performances at bars. Occasionally I’ll get a gem. And then, because it’s the Internet, occasionally I’ll get something like the above — footage of a foreigner apparently getting beat up because he was sexually assaulting a girl — in public — whose calls for help were answered. As he lies on the ground, two camps form among onlookers: those who continue cursing him (including the guy who stomps on him) and those who urge restraint, saying, “Stop beating him, stop beating him.” The video stops when the police arrive.
The video, in Chinese, is called, “Foreigner, we’re going to beat you out of China,” posted yesterday. According to the Youku description, it was filmed opposite the Sogo Department Store, 100 meters south of the Xuanwumen subway station. It already has 1.32 million views.
Its veracity has not been verified, but Ministry of Tofu has uncovered the Sina Weibo page in which netizens discuss the incident. (The comment thread, now 1,357 deep, is not pretty.) One commenter says this was a scam perpetrated by the girl and, presumably, the man taking the video. Again, no one knows anything definitive. We’ll update you with more info as it becomes available.
UPDATE 1, 3:21 pm: The Beijing police department’s Sina Weibo posted at 11:27 am today that the man, who is from the UK, was drunk and in fact had approached the girl, and that passersby called the cops. The investigation is pending. Here’s RFH’s update.
UPDATE 2, 4:16 pm: Here’s the above-linked police notice, translated by Alicia:
Last night, on Sina Weibo, a drunk man harassed a female near Xuanwumen and was stopped by passersby. Video of the incident has captured people’s attention and led to inquiries.
According “Ping’an Beijing’s” understanding, on May 8, 2012, around 11 pm, a foreign male assaulted a female in public after drinking. After being discovered by passersby who stopped him and called the police, the police immediately rushed to the scene to arrest the male. Subsequently, police sobered up the male and are now holding him and investigating according to the law. The male is British, has a tourist via. At present this incident is being processed according to the law.
UPDATE 3, 4:56 pm: The British consulate in Beijing said they are aware of the story, but they have yet to be asked for assistance.
UPDATE 4, 5/11, 12:42 pm: Global Times has tracked down the man who first intervenes in the video. “When the girl screamed for help the first time, I thought it was a lovers’ tiff, but after she screamed ‘I don’t know this guy’, I realized something was wrong,” said the man surnamed Wu.
UPDATE 5, 5/15, 3:33 pm: The guys in the video seen assaulting the foreigner are going to be charged as well, according to RFH.
UPDATE 6, 5/29, 3:32 pm: After 20 days’ detention, he’s been deported and is currently on a flight back to Britain.