Updated: Urbana police have homicide suspect in custody

Updated: Urbana police have homicide suspect in custody

URBANA - Urbana police have arrested  a man believed to be responsible for the death of his estranged girlfriend in Urbana Friday.

Urbana police Lt. Bryant Seraphin said officers were called shortly after 11 a.m. to the One South apartment complex in the 1300 block of North Lincoln Avenue, where a woman had run into the courtyard and reported that her 25-year-old roommate had been killed.

The victim was a University of Illinois student.

"There was a roommate who had been in the apartment at the time. She was bound or restrained. She broke free and came out into the courtyard and that was how we got notified," Seraphin said.

Police used cellphone technology to locate the wanted man, Yongfei Ci, 29, at a motel at 1212 W.Anthony Dr. in Champaign about 1:20 p.m. Police said Ci lives in Urbana.

After officers arrived, Ci called 911 to say he would surrender to police, according to a press release. He was arrested without incident.

Ci is a sixth-year Ph.D. student in math at the UI, according to his UI web page.

According to an Urbana police press release, Ci forced his way into the apartment and locked the victim's roommate in the bathroom. The roommate was left uninjured.

Police have not released the name of the victim nor how she died. An autopsy is pending.

University of Illinois police issued Illini alerts beginning about 12:45 p.m. about the off-campus homicide and put out the suspect's name and description of his car.

Anyone with information on this incident is asked to call Urbana police at 217-384-2320 or Crimestoppers at 217-373-8477.

Tips can also be sent at www.373tips.com or by text by sending "CCTip" plus the tip to CRIMES (274637).


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