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August 8, 2001

Suspect in Purdue murders being returned to Indiana

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The man suspected in the murder of two South Korean sisters at Purdue University will be returned to Indiana tonight (Wednesday, 8/8) after waiving extradition in a New York state court this morning.

Zhan Yin

Zhan Yin, 27, of the People's Republic of China, is expected to arrive at the Purdue Airport between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m., said Joseph L. Bennett, vice president for university relations. Yin will be in the custody of Purdue Chief of Police Linda Stump and Captain of Investigations Steve Dietrich, who traveled to Amherst, N.Y., today to interview Yin and make arrangements to return him to Tippecanoe County.

Yin will be taken to the Tippecanoe County Jail, where he will be held pending a preliminary hearing Thursday (8/9). He faces charges on two counts of murder.

"Investigators felt the best course of action was to bring Mr. Yin back to Indiana as soon as possible," Bennett said. "We are hopeful that more information about the crimes will come to light as the investigation continues here."

Yin, a Purdue doctoral student in biological sciences, is accused of killing doctoral student Yeunkyung Woo, 31, and her sister, Hyo Kyung Woo, 29, who was visiting the West Lafayette campus from Chicago. Their bodies were discovered Friday morning (8/3) in the Purdue Village student apartment where Yeunkyung Woo lived.

Tippecanoe County Coroner Martin Avolt said both victims died sometime Thursday evening (8/2) from blunt force trauma and incised wounds.

Initial reports that Yin was entering the United States from Canada were incorrect. Amherst police arrested Yin shortly before 8 p.m. Tuesday (8/7) after he was refused entry into Canada via the Rainbow Bridge near Niagara Falls. Border officials on the United States' side of the bridge then ran a check on his license plate and discovered he was wanted by police. Yin was still driving the red Ford Taurus rental car he used to flee the Oklahoma State University campus in Stillwater, Okla., on Monday morning.

Police said Yin traveled to Oklahoma to visit a friend who is an OSU student.

According to a news release issued Monday by Oklahoma State University, Yin's wife, Jun Ke, told authorities there that she had tried to convince her husband to stay in Indiana and cooperate with investigators, but he wanted to visit his friend first. She contacted Oklahoma State University police after Yin left in their rented car. She told police Yin was despondent and she believed he planned to commit suicide.

Yin and Jun Ke, live at 118-12 Marshall Drive, West Lafayette. Jun Ke is a Purdue doctoral student in mathematics. Their apartment is in the same 1,200-unit Purdue Village complex where Yeunkyung Woo lived.

Source: Joseph L. Bennett, (765) 427-1112, jlbennett@purdue.edu

Writer: Sharon A. Bowker, (765) 494-9723, sbowker@purdue.edu

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096; purduenews@purdue.edu

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