Thursday, January 22, 2009

Beheading at Virginia Tech

Dymphna reported last night on the latest murder at Virginia Tech. As additional details emerge, the story gets stranger and more chilling: both the alleged perp and the victim were Chinese, and the victim was beheaded. According to AFP:

Chinese student decapitated at Virginia Tech

WASHINGTON (AFP) — A female Chinese graduate student has been decapitated by a fellow student at Virginia Tech, the scene of the worst school shooting in US history in 2007, police said Thursday.

At approximately 7:00 pm Wednesday (0000 GMT Thursday), Xin Yang, a 22-year-old graduate student from Beijing, was killed at an Au Bon Pain cafe on the Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg, Virginia, university officials said.

They added that emergency contact records suggest that Yang and the student who murdered her, Haiyang Zhu from Ningbo, China, knew each other. According to officials, witnesses said Zhu, 25, attacked Yang with a knife.
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“There were seven witnesses in the cafe. There had been no argument, no shouting” when the young woman was attacked, said Virginia Tech spokesman Mark Owczarski, confirming that Yang and been decapitated.

“This is horrible and tragic. Especially when we know that Virginia Tech has got its share of hardship and horror.”


Zhu was charged with first-degree murder and was being held at a county jail. He had not had a record with university or local police, the school indicated.

Yang had arrived at Virginia Tech in early January to begin studies in accounting. Zhu was a PhD graduate student in agriculture and applied economics.

Hat tip: doctorbulldog, in the comments — who points out that there is a mosque in Ningbo.


Abu Abdullah said...

This case is probably a crime of passion. A similar case happened in Vancouver, Canada in 2002, where a young Chinese guy murdered his Chinese girlfriend and dumped the body in a remote area with the help of his cousin. Other cases of Chinese nationals behaving badly overseas: murders, kidnappings, extortions, etc. The perpetrators are insular, spoiled brats spawned by China's nouveau riche and one-child policy.

Tuan Jim said...

What about the Chinese guy who beheaded the guy on the Canadian bus a few months back? I don't recall hearing how that turned out after the initial shocking summary (probably still pending trial).

heroyalwhyness said...

Zhu’s roommates, identified by Segar as Tech students Ming Yi and Lei Pan, could not be reached for comment.

Zhu’s landlord says suspect was “rude and belligerent”

Andrew said...

Ningbo Mosque

Abu Abdullah said...

From the Ledger-Inquirer:
However, a Chinese-language blog was written earlier this month under the name Haiyang Zhu, and displaying the same photo of Zhu by authorities in Virginia. The author expressed frustration over stock losses and other problems in the blog, dated Jan. 7.

"Big stock losses. Recently I've been so frustrated I think only of killing someone or committing suicide," the posting reads.

J. S. Oppenheim said...

China has had a long festering issue with Islamic militants in its Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, which is located in the northwest of the country, adjacent to all the Asian nations of greater interest in the Islamic Small Wars. Ningo, from which Haiyang Zhu hails, is located in Zhejiang Province, adjacent to the east China Sea. I would consider emotional issues a more likely possibility here than terrorism, but we'll see how the investigation shakes out.

Unknown said...

I saw an article about this in Friday's Washington Post. Since then, I have seen nothing in the Post and nothing on TV. Any idea why?