The 10-year-old daughter of a man who killed his wife two years ago in China's Henan province has written a letter to a court pleading for a reprieve to her father's death penalty.
Jin Jin had sent the letter to the Supreme People's Court (SPC) in Beijing which is handling the final review of her father Wang Junbao's case, China Daily reported on Thursday.
Wang, a 36-year-old village doctor, repeatedly hit his 31-year-old wife Feng Li that led to her death in March 2007 following a fight over a trivial matter. Wang's attempt to commit suicide failed and he was sentenced to death in December 2007 by a local court.
Jin Jin's resolve to save her father moved Ding Qiaorong, head of the Xinxiang orphanage she stayed in after her father went to jail, according to China Daily.
Ding helped Jin Jin to engage Beijing lawyer Shen Teng, who assisted the girl in writing a letter to SPC and suggested a death penalty with a two-year reprieve instead.
"From my meetings with him to letters left for his daughter, the murderer has repeatedly expressed his love for his dead wife and regrets his stupid impulse leading to the murder," Shen was quoted as saying.
"If the court can change the death penalty with immediate execution into a two-year reprieve, it will be good for Jin Jin's future," Shen said.
An online survey by major information portal Sina.com on Wednesday showed nearly 64 per cent of the 23,781 people polled were sympathetic to the girl and hoped the SPC would overturn the death sentence.
Another 31 per cent of the respondents disagreed with a reprieve and said that those who killed people should pay for the murders with their own lives.
"Wang committed an unpardonable crime," lawyer Zhao Xiaolu was quoted by China Daily as saying. "If he doesn't receive capital punishment, there will be even more harm done to society."
"We cannot sacrifice justice and equality for mercy," Zhao added.