THE STORY OF the rape of junior high school teacher Zhou Qin, 26, has garnered more attention than the usual reports of abuses by Chinese officials, because of the stunning response given her complaint by Chinese police: they dismissed the case on the grounds that “wearing a condom doesn’t count as rape.”
Zhou taught at the Huajuea junior high school in the town of Ashi, Bijie Region, southwestern Guizhou province. On the morning of May 17 classes were cancelled for a session of “legal education.” After that, it was time for the local apparatchiks to party. Zhou Qin was ordered to their banquet and—in an atmosphere of semi-coercion, the original article by Qianzhong Morning Post indicates—made to drink more than her fill.
Wang Zhonggui, chief of the local land and resource management bureau and later accused of rape, encouraged her drinking to the tune of 15 cups. He later picked her up in his car while she was stumbling home, brought her back to his office, and raped her.
The events hadn’t been given a public airing until now because the case was in the hands of local police officials. Zhou Qin went to the press after the police released their shocking conclusion that it doesn’t count as rape with a condom on.
But do police in China even believe that? What’s to say it’s not simply a bitter, sarcastic dismissal?