TW: The following article describes an incident of domestic violence, murder and suicide. Some of the linked sources include graphic details and sensitive images that you may find disturbing.
Multiple outlets, including Metro.co.uk, have reported that Gary Chu, 28, is suspected of murdering Yee-min Huang, 27, in New Taipei City in North Taiwan.
Huang’s remains were discovered in seven garbage bags outside of the apartment building Chu lived in. CCTV footage shows Huang and Chu in that building’s stairwell. Video footage also captured Chu carrying Huang’s remains outside of the building.
The final days of both Chu and Huang’s lives were revealed, somewhat, in social media messages from Chu and Huang’s brother Francis Huang.
Last week Huang posted on social media that his sister was missing and that her family had not seen her since May 19th. He expressed that he feared she was being held against her will by Chu.
That same day, Chu posted on Facebook that he had ‘never once hurt [Huang] or restricted her freedom’. Chu also claimed that he tried breaking up with Huang, but that she kept returning to him.
However, Chu then posted that he felt ‘deceived and betrayed’ by Huang. In his posts he stated that the pair met via the dating app Tinder and that he believed Huang was ‘cheating’ on him. Chu also claimed he felt ‘betrayed’ over Huang allegedly lying about being a virgin.
After these posts Francis Huang contacted police in Taiwan’s Banqiao District. Authorities searched Chu’s home, but found it empty. Police then discovered the CCTV footage, which led them to a flower garden where Huang’s remains were recovered.
Chu’s dead body was later discovered hanging from a tree near the Ministry of Health and Welfare Hospital in Xinzhuang District. A suicide note found next to Chu’s body stated, “she wronged me.”
Taiwan News reported that Chu was raised and educated in the US where he trained in MMA. The same outlet also reported that Chu had a criminal record in the US for bank robbery and that he was previously married. Taiwan News stated that a forum post, allegedly made by the sister of Chu’s ex-wife, claimed that Chu was physically abusive. That post came with photographs of bruises.
The forum user further alleged that Chu imported marijuana into Taiwan and may have been awaiting sentencing on a drug smuggling case.
New Bloom Magazine, which covers activism and youth politics in Taiwan, discussed Chu in an op-ed titled Wave of murders in past month has its roots in toxic masculinity in Taiwanese society.
In that piece, author Brian Hioe wrote that there is an ‘alarmingly high’ rate of domestic violence in Taiwan, an island that is home to 23 million people. The rate of domestic violence amounts to one reported case occurring every five minutes. In 2016 there were 117,550 reported cases, but it is believed that instances of both domestic abuse and sexual assault are vastly under-reported in Taiwan.
Hioe ended his piece by stating, “now may be a time to reflect deeply on the nature of male privilege, toxic masculinity, and frequently unpunished violence committed by men in Taiwanese society.”