Bodies of Evidence

Wang Manji was returning home with freshly dug sweet potatoes from her fields last October when she stepped into the most bitter event of her life. A deranged neighbor had abducted her 15-year-old son and was holding him ransom with a meat cleaver. His demands: $100 and a car. Fifty policemen came to the rescue—and then, Wang says, the dithering began. The abductor claimed to be related to a top cop, and, Wang says, "the officers spent all their time trying to figure out what kind of a relative he was." After a fruitless, 8-hr. standoff, the neighbor sliced Wang's son...

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