UNC Graduate Student Charged With Murder For Allegedly Shooting Professor

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Arjun Singh Contributor
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The graduate student who allegedly shot and killed a professor at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (UNC) on Monday has been charged with murder, according to NBC News.

Tailei Qi, a doctoral candidate in applied physics at UNC, allegedly shot a member of the faculty at the university’s Caudill Labs on Monday afternoon. Qi was arrested on Monday afternoon following a manhunt in the UNC area and charged with first-degree murder, according to NBC News. (RELATED: Faculty Member Killed In Campus Shooting That Locked Down University For Hours)

“We certainly want the opportunity to interview the suspect,” UNC Police Chief Brian James said at a press conference on Monday. “To actually have the suspect in custody gives us an opportunity to figure out the why. And even the how, and also helps us to uncover a motive and … really just why this happened today.”

Qi is being held at the Orange County Detention Center in Hillsborough, North Carolina, without bail, according to an email from UNC sent to the Daily Caller News Foundation. In addition to being charged with murder, Qi has also been charged with possessing a gun on educational property, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office Daily Custody Report.

After Qi allegedly shot the faculty member, the university was placed on lockdown for several hours until police lifted the order at 4:15 PM. Qi was first identified as a “person of interest” by police during the lockdown, with his photograph being released to the public at 2:35 PM.

The faculty member Qi allegedly shot was identified as Dr. Zijie Yan, a Chinese-born associate professor of applied physical sciences at UNC, according to WECT News. Yan was Qi’s academic advisor.

Qi is a graduate of Wuhan University in China, according to his LinkedIn profile page. The Orange County Sheriff’s office has notified the Chinese Mission to the United States of his detention, a requirement for foreign nationals who are arrested, according to an email from the sheriff’s office to the Daily Caller News Foundation.

The UNC Police and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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