The Latest: Kidnap suspect ordered to be held without bond
URBANA, Ill. (AP) — The Latest in the alleged kidnapping of a visiting University of Illinois scholar from China (all times local):
A federal judge in Illinois has ordered a man accused of kidnapping a visiting University of Illinois scholar from China to be held without bond.
Monday’s brief hearing was the first court appearance for 28-year-old Brendt Christensen since he was charged on Friday in the kidnapping of Yingying Zhang. Authorities have said they believe the 26-year-old Zhang is dead, although her body has not been found.
The (Champaign) News-Gazette reports that Christensen — clad in an orange jumpsuit — didn’t speak during the nine-minute hearing other than to acknowledge that he understood his rights.
Christensen is scheduled to attend a bond hearing before U.S. Magistrate Judge Eric Long on Wednesday. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for July 14.
Christensen is accused of abducting Zhang in Urbana on June 9.
Hundreds of people are gathering outside a federal courthouse where a hearing is being held for a man charged in the kidnapping of a visiting University of Illinois scholar from China.
Authorities believe the scholar, Yingying Zhang, is dead. Her body has not been found.
The Champaign News-Gazette also reports that U.S. Magistrate Judge Eric Long moved Brendt Allen Christensen’s first court hearing to a larger courtroom to accommodate his family and Zhang’s relatives.
Christensen is accused of abducting the 26-year-old woman on June 9 as she headed to sign a lease for an apartment. The criminal complaint says that Zhang was late for the appointment and that after she was unsuccessful in flagging down a bus, she got into a car driven by the 28-year-old Christensen.
A 28-year-old will make his initial court appearance on a federal charge of kidnapping a visiting University of Illinois scholar from China who authorities believe to be dead.
Brendt Allen Christensen is to appear Monday in a U.S. district court in Urbana, not far from the Urbana-Champaign campus in central Illinois.
The Champaign man is accused of abducting 26-year-old Yingying Zhang on June 9 as she headed to sign a lease for an apartment. Her body hasn’t been found.
Federal judges typically use initial hearings to make sure a suspect understands the charges. Defendants usually enter a plea only later at arraignment.
The criminal complaint says Zhang was running late and tried unsuccessfully to flag down a bus. It says minutes later, she got into a car driven by Christensen.