Graduate Student Charged In Murder Of Faculty Adviser Found Unfit For Trial

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Brandon Poulter Contributor
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A graduate student accused of murdering his faculty adviser was declared unfit for trial by a judge Monday after failing multiple mental health evaluations, according to The Associated Press

Tailei Qi is being held without bond for charges of first-degree murder and possession of a firearm on educational property after allegedly killing Zijie Yan, an associate professor of applied physical sciences and faculty adviser, in a science building at the University of North Carolina (UNC) in August, according to the AP. Orange County Superior Court Judge Alyson Grine said that it is likely Qi suffers from untreated schizophrenia and ordered him to be sent to a mental health facility. (RELATED: Jewish Professor Banned From Campus After Deceptively-Edited Video Of Him Wishing Death On Hamas Went Viral)

“Qi demonstrated delusional thinking, experienced auditory hallucinations, engaged in self-harm in the detention center, showed fragmented thought processes that impeded his communication,” Grine said, according to the AP.

CHAPEL HILL, NORTH CAROLINA – JUNE 29: People walk on the campus of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill on June 29, 2023 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. (Photo by Eros Hoagland/Getty Images)

Qi’s mental illness makes him unable to understand his situation and participate in court proceedings, Grine said, according to the AP. She ordered Qi to be committed to Central Regional Hospital in Butner, North Carolina, for psychological treatment.

Students and faculty experienced a campus-wide lockdown after the shooting of Yan that eventually resulted in Qi’s arrest in a residential neighborhood close to campus within hours of the attack, according to the AP. UNC locked down again two weeks after the incident when police received a call saying that someone brandished a weapon in the student union on campus.

Qi was a doctoral candidate in applied physics at UNC and was identified as a “person of interest” by police during the lockdown of the school.

UNC declined to comment in an email to the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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