Chinese Couple Executed for Throwing Children Out 15th Floor Window

A Chinese couple, Zhang Bo and Ye Chengchen, were executed this week for the murder of Zhang’s two children from a previous marriage. The execution, believed to have been carried out by lethal injection, followed the approval of their death sentences by China’s highest court.

In 2020, Zhang was found guilty of killing his two children by throwing them from the 15th floor of a residential building in Chongqing, southwest China. Ye was also convicted as the court determined she had coerced Zhang into committing the murders. The victims, a two-year-old girl and a one-year-old boy, were seen by Ye as impediments to their plans to start a new family, and she assisted in staging their deaths as an accidental fall.

The couple was sentenced to death in 2021, but the execution was delayed due to a lengthy appeals process that resulted in a second trial. The Chongqing High People’s Court upheld the original ruling, stating that the sentences for Zhang and Ye were appropriate.

The court’s decision was then submitted to the Supreme People’s Court for approval. The higher court found that both Zhang and Ye played primary roles in the crime and were principal offenders. The court deemed their motive as “despicable” and their method as “brutal,” warranting severe punishment under the law.

Zhang had begun an extramarital affair with Ye without disclosing his marital status and the existence of his two children. After divorcing his wife, Chen Meilin, in February 2020, Ye pressured Zhang to kill his children, whom she viewed as obstacles to their marriage and a burden on their future life together.

Following the murder of his children, Zhang Ruixue and Zhang Yangrui, in November 2020, Zhang was seen in videos appearing grief-stricken. He was also observed banging his head on the wall and sobbing uncontrollably. At the time, Zhang claimed he was asleep when the children “fell” and said he woke up to people shouting downstairs.

The crime committed by Zhang and Ye sent shockwaves across China due to its premeditated nature and the age of the victims. Their executions quickly became a trending topic on Chinese social media site Weibo, receiving nearly 200 million views.