Illi­nois jury reaches mur­der verdict in two hours

Lodi News-Sentinel - - NATION/WORLD - — Chicago Tribune

PEO­RIA, Ill. — A fed­eral jury on Mon­day found Brendt Chris­tensen guilty in the kid­nap­ping and mur­der of Chi­nese scholar Yingy­ing Zhang in Cham­paign-Ur­bana in 2017.

The jury reached the verdict af­ter less than two hours of de­lib­er­a­tions. The 12-mem­ber panel will now be asked to de­cide whether Chris­tensen, 29, should be sen­tenced to death for the crime. That process is ex­pected to be­gin July 8.

Chris­tensen sat ex­pres­sion­less as the verdict was read.

The verdict did not come as a sur­prise — Chris­tensen’s at­tor­neys ad­mit­ted in their open­ing state­ment that he killed Zhang, a 26-year-old visit­ing scholar at the Univer­sity of Illi­nois.

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