Man sentenced to death for murder and attempted rape of female classmate

Defendant admitted crimes but plans to appeal his sentence

PUBLISHED : Friday, 30 December, 2016, 5:48pm
UPDATED : Friday, 30 December, 2016, 5:48pm

A 24-year-old man was sentenced to death by a Beijing court on Friday for the murder and attempted rape of a fellow student.

Li Sida, who was studying audio engineering at the same university as the victim, Zhou Yunlu, had asked her to star in an amateur film in August last year, the Legal Evening News reported.

Zhou was an aspiring actress who studied at the prestigious Communication University of China, which lists many famous directors and movie stars as its alumni.

She went missing on the day she was scheduled to shoot scenes with Li at his flat in the Chaoyang district of Beijing. Her classmates and teachers then spread the news of her disappearance across Chinese social media and reported it to police, who later discovered her body at Li’s flat, the report said.

Zhou was quoted as saying he had told the victim that they were going to shoot a scene of her being tied up. “She hesitated for a while and then accepted when I told her I would pay her 500 yuan per day,” Li said, according to the report.

Zhou was stabbed in the throat by Li and died of loss of blood.

Li admitted to the murder and attempted rape of Zhou after his arrest and was reported to have said, “I’m sorry, she has died,” when located by police at a restaurant near the university.

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Li was quoted as saying he wanted to find an “innocent person” to vent his emotions on and Zhou was just an unfortunate victim.

Li said he would appeal his death sentence.

University student crimes account for about 17 per cent of crimes in China committed by those aged six to 25, and have been on the rise since 2014 according to a study by Kang Shuhua, a renowned Chinese criminologist. Among those university student crimes, 70 per cent were thefts, the study said.