PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — Testimony has wrapped up in the penalty phase of the trial of a former University of Illinois doctoral student convicted of killing a scholar from China.
Prosecutors called their last witnesses Tuesday to rebut presentations by Brendt Christensen’s lawyers.READ MORE: Bridge Lifts Saturday After 8 A.M. From South Ashland To Lake Shore Drive
The (Champaign) News-Gazette reports that the federal judge in Peoria set closing arguments for Wednesday. After that, jurors will deliberate on whether the 30-year-old should be sentenced to death.
The same jurors convicted Christensen in June for abducting and killing 28-year-old Yingying Zhang in 2017. Prosecutors emphasized the brutality of the slaying, saying Christensen raped Zhang and beat her to death.READ MORE: Tiffany Henyard To Be Sworn In As Dolton's First Woman Mayor
Zhang’s body has never been found.
The defense sought to humanize Christensen, including by showing videos of him as a child. He didn’t testify.MORE NEWS: Mayor Lightfoot Delays General Iron Permit To Move To South Side Over EPA Concerns
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