More Disbelief Over Murder Charges Against NU Professor

(CBS) — New information about a former Northwestern University professor accused of murder.

People who know Wyndham Lathem – who will be extradited to Chicago from California – are waiting for answers, CBS 2’s Mai Martinez reports..

Those who know Lathem remember a man who was smiling and happy.

prof2 More Disbelief Over Murder Charges Against NU Professor

Wyndham Lathem (Alameda County Calif. Sheriff’s Office)

It’s a stark contrast to the man now charged with murder who was on the run from police for more than a week.

“He has people who adore him, who have known him for decades. They all refer to him as intelligent, kind, a gentle soul,” says attorney Kenneth H. Wine, who represented Lathem at an extradition hearing earlier this week.

On Tuesday, Dr. William Goldman, who supervised Lathem during his post-doctoral research at Washington University, described Lathem as a microbiologist “at the top of his game.”

Lathem was “a very well-respected scientist who had garnered respect from all aspects of his professional life,” Goldman added during a telephone interview.

Lathem’s work even caught the attention of the prestigious Institut Pasteur in Paris, which was recruiting him. Published reports say ultimately Lathem was denied security clearance by the French government.

Perhaps that’s the reason for an April 11 tweet sent from Lathem’s Twitter account that says  “you’ve got to be kidding me.” It includes a link to an article about then-French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron inviting U.S. scientists at odds with U.S. President Donald Trump to move to France.

Goldman says he doubts a security issue was the reason for the Paris job falling through.

Lathem and a British man were wanted in connection with the murder of Trenton James Cornell-Duranleau, 26, whose body was found July 27 in Lathem’s State Street residence.

The two suspects turned themselves in to police in the Bay Area last week.

More from Mai Martinez

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