Chinese Driver Jailed in Toddler Hit-and-Run Case

Posted September 6th, 2012 at 2:40 am (UTC-5)
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A Chinese court has given a three-and-a-half year prison sentence to the driver who struck a toddler in a hit-and-run case that prompted a public outcry.

The official Xinhua news agency said Thursday that Hu Jun was convicted of involuntary homicide in the southern city of Foshan, where the girl was hit by his minibus last October.

The two-year-old, known as Yue Yue, was struck by two vehicles and ignored by at least 18 passers-by as she lay critically injured in a busy market street. A trash collector later stopped to help the girl, but she died days later of brain injuries.

Surveillance video of the incident quickly spread online throughout China, causing many to wonder if Chinese culture has become too cold-hearted in its rapid drive for economic prosperity.

The court said Hu was given a lighter sentence because he surrendered to police and paid part of the girl's medical costs. He pleaded guilty to traffic offenses but said he did not realize that he hit the girl before.