By Vanessa Ko, for CNN
HONG KONG (CNN) – A 13-year-old boy is in intensive care in Beijing after two adults assaulted him by releasing compressed air into his body using a mechanical pump at an automobile repair shop.
Chinese media reported that the boy, Du Chuanwang, who lives in Shandong Province on China’s east coast, suffered from dozens of puncture wounds in his intestines and multiple organ failure.
The boy helped out at the auto repair shop, where two co-workers allegedly inserted the nozzle of an air pump into his anus and filled his body with air. The suspects have been detained.
Local police posted a message last week on Sina Weibo, China’s microblogging site, saying that the two men pushed the boy to the ground during the attack, and that the incident was a “prank.”
Ai Qingze, the head of the Shandong hospital where Du received initial treatment, told the China Daily newspaper that upon seeing his inflated belly, the surgeons there cut his abdomen open to expel the gas and saw that his small intestines were bleeding. Ai said the boy’s liver, kidneys and stomach were also damaged.
Du was in a coma for eight days following the assault. He woke up three days ago and was transferred to the intensive care unit at Bayi Children’s Hospital in Beijing on Thursday.
“We can only provide the necessary life support to him for now, as his condition is very complicated, and the doctors have not yet devised a final treatment plan,” a hospital official told CNN.
Hospital officials declined to give more details about Du’s current condition.
Angel Mom, a charity group that helped arrange the hospital transfer, posted on Weibo that Du has a serious nose infection that is causing necrosis. A photo in the post shows massive decay of the boy’s nose and cheek.
The post also said that after 20 hours of treatment, the boy’s digestive tract has stopped bleeding, and his acid and electrolyte levels have returned to normal.
Du’s father, uncle and grandfather went along to Beijing. The boy’s mother died six years ago.
The family said they earn around 5,000 yuan ($780) per year from a small plot of land.
“We sent him to the repair shop because our family is close with the owner,” said the grandfather. “Since his mother passed away, his dad hoped the owner of the repair shop could take care of him. We think of the owner as the boy’s guardian.”
The repair shop owner did not pay him money but bought him clothes and other items, according to the grandfather. He said the teenager does not actually work there but helps with simple tasks.
China Daily reported that his treatment at the first hospital, in Shandong, cost about 100,000 yuan, and that the repair shop owner paid for 60% of it.
Angel Mom said it has received over 400,000 yuan in donations for the boy but has since suspended the donation drive, as the money seems to be enough for his treatment for now — it would start accepting donations again if more funds are needed.
The family said Du’s father had received 101,500 yuan of the donations so far.
CY Xu contributed reporting from Beijing