Growing public outrage over video of chained woman in shed leads to investigation by Chinese authorities

mother of eight
  • In late January, a video of a Chinese woman with mental illness chained and locked inside a doorless shed by her husband went viral.
  • The video was taken by a Chinese vlogger who visited the Huankou village and found the woman in harrowing conditions.
  • The mother of eight was seen only wearing a light sweater in the cold, winter weather and had a chain around her neck.
  • Since the post went viral, public concerns were raised over the woman’s well-being, and many reported the video to authorities to initiate an investigation against the husband.
  • Chinese authorities began an investigation into the case and have denied rumors that the woman was kidnapped. 

Following public concern and requests for an investigation, Chinese authorities are investigating the case of a mother of eight who was seen in a viral video with a chain around her neck and left in a doorless shed by her husband. 

The video of the woman, surnamed Yang, was uploaded by a Chinese vlogger to Douyin in late January and shows the mother of eight chained and left alone inside a doorless shed in cold winter temperatures. 

According to South China Morning Post, the vlogger’s intention was to force the husband, surnamed Dong, to give his wife better treatment under pressure from public opinion. 

Many were left concerned and outraged by the woman’s living conditions and reported the video to local authorities to investigate as a case of abuse. 

A women’s rights association and local authorities investigated Yang’s case and sent her to be checked at a local hospital where she was diagnosed with schizophrenia.

After discovering the couple’s marriage documents, officers confirmed that Yang was originally from Yagu Village in Fugong County in the southwestern Yunnan Province. It is also unclear whether she consented to her current marriage due to the status of her mental health at the time.

Dong explained that his wife began developing violent behaviors at the time of their marriage due to her schizophrenia, but Yang was still able to go about her daily life. The husband claims, however, that in June 2021, she started attacking others and smashing things, prompting him to keep her tied to an iron chain. 

Many online users remain skeptical of the investigation and are questioning the process. One Weibo user commented asking why the husband is not being punished, while another said it kept them “angry all night.”

Authorities have still not been able to confirm Yang’s identity due to the passing of both her parents. The case remains under investigation. 

Feature Image via Weibo, Twitter

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