U of I kidnapping suspect makes first court appearance

URBANA - The man arrested in connection with the disappearance of a University of Illinois scholar was in court for the first time Monday morning.

Brendt Christensen, 27, appeared at 10:00 a.m. A detention hearing was scheduled for 3 p.m. July 5th and a preliminary hearing is planned for July 14th.

The FBI arrested Christensen Friday and he is facing charges in connection with the kidnapping of YingYing Zhang. He's a former graduate student  who graduated from the U of I in May 2017  from the physics program.

Christensen is accused of driving the black Saturn Astra that was show on surveillance camera picking up Zhang June 9th. According to the affidavit filed in federal court, Christensen originally told authorities he offered Zhang a ride and dropped her off a few blocks away.

Agents say they overheard him admitting to kidnapping Zhang on Thursday, and holding her against her will.


More Stories

Trending Stories

Don't Miss

  • CIProud Text Alerts
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Meet the Team
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • CI Heroes
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • WMBD on Facebook
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Living Well with Evelyn Wilkerson
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Latest News

Video Center