Tianjin police save 3-year-old girl after six-hour standoff with hostage taker

A three-year-old girl was rescued after a tense six-hour standoff between a hostage-taker and police in a convenience store in Tianjin.
A three-year-old girl was rescued after a tense six-hour standoff between a hostage-taker and police in a convenience store in Tianjin.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM MIAOPAI.COM

TIANJING - A three-year-old girl was rescued after a tense six-hour standoff between a hostage-taker and police in a convenience store in Tianjin this month.

Undercover police from the Chinese northern port city pretended to be the girl's relatives and managed to subdue the suspect after distracting him by offering him a bottle of water.

The episode was captured on the store's surveillance camera, and the footage was recently released, Chinese media reported.

The man allegedly grabbed the girl, held her at knife-point, and demanded 20,000 yuan (S$4,100) from her mother at about 7pm on Nov 14.

A policeman pretending to be the girl's uncle first approached the suspect to suss out the situation, Peng Pai News reported.

In CCTV footage published by Peng Pai, the policeman says in Mandarin: "It's out of control, he asked me to go. Doesn't want the money, doesn't want the car."

Another police officer pretends to be the girl's aunt and cries as she begs the suspect to let the hostage go.


Undercover police managed to subdue the suspect after distracting him by offering him a bottle of water. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM MIAOPAI.COM

The male officer, still in speaking as the uncle, offers to be tied up and taken hostage instead.

Meanwhile, police officers and vehicles lined the street outside the store and snipers were deployed.

At close to 1am the next morning, three of the police officers negotiating with the hostage managed to get into the store.

The video shows one of them talking to the suspect, while another offers him a bottle of water, using it as an excuse to get close.


The child is rescued after a six hour stand-off. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM MIAOPAI.COM

As the suspect stretches out his hand to take the water, the officer lunges at him. Other officers quickly rush up to help arrest him.

The 27-year-old suspect, surnamed Lu, is said to be from Guangxi, and was mired in gambling debt.