URBANA, Ill. (AP) — A 28-year-old will make his initial court appearance on a federal charge of kidnapping a visiting University of Illinois scholar from China who authorities believe to be dead.
Brendt Allen Christensen is to appear Monday in a U.S. district court in Urbana, not far from the Urbana-Champaign campus in central Illinois.
The Champaign man is accused of abducting 26-year-old Yingying Zhang on June 9 as she headed to sign a lease for an apartment. Her body hasn't been found.
Federal judges typically use initial hearings to make sure a suspect understands the charges. Defendants usually enter a plea only later at arraignment.
The criminal complaint says Zhang was running late and tried unsuccessfully to flag down a bus. It says minutes later, she got into a car driven by Christensen.