Car hitting pedestrian starts riot in China; and more on the "car war" theme.
It started before 3 p.m. when a Toyota sedan grazed a middle school student crossing the street and the teen and the driver quarreled. A few men emerged from the car and set on the student, a local store manager surnamed Wu who saw the clash told Reuters by telephone.
The men were taken to a police station and a crowd that had been watching the fight swarmed around the building, Wu said, demanding that the men be handed over to them as their numbers swelled by the minute.
Some among the growing mob focused their anger on the men's Toyota, smashing it, flipping it over and torching it, Wu said.
The crowd, now numbering as many as 10,000, also flipped three parked police cars and set them ablaze.
Protests have become increasingly common in China, fueled by corruption and the widening wealth gap, but authorities are keen to quickly quash dissent and preserve stability.
There were more than 58,000 protests, many of them over land rights disputes, across the country in 2003, a Communist Party-backed magazine, Outlook, has reported.