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Brendt Christensen

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Man Who Raped and Murdered Chinese Scholar Escapes Death Penalty, Smiles Over Life Sentence

Yingying Zhang

The former University of Illinois graduate student, Brendt Christensen, who was found guilty of kidnapping, raping, and murdering Chinese scholar Yingying Zhang, has evaded the death penalty and has been sentenced to life in prison. 

A jury of 12 people deliberated for more than eight hours over two days, but ultimately failed to reach a unanimous decision verdict, according to wttw.

Murderer of Chinese Scholar Offers to Reveal The Location of Her Body to Avoid Death Penalty

Yingying Zhang

Brendt Christensen, who was convicted of raping, torturing, and killing Yingying Zhang, a visiting Chinese scholar at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has offered to reveal the location of his victim’s remains in exchange for a life sentence.

The 29-year-old could face the death penalty for his murder of Zhang, whose body remains missing since her disappearance in June 2017.

Man Who Kidnapped Chinese Scholar Raped and Beheaded Her, Idolized Ted Bundy

Yingying Zhang

A former Ph.D. student accused of kidnapping, torturing, and murdering Yingying Zhang, a visiting Chinese scholar at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign two years ago is responsible for the victim’s death, a defense lawyer told jurors this week.

Brendt Christensen, 29, is on trial for the disappearance of Zhang, who went missing on June 9, 2017 and had been presumed dead based on evidence recovered during the investigation.

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