Alton Spann, 18, of Chicago, Illinois, United States has been arrested. The Cook County State’s Attorney charged him with first-degree murder, armed robbery and two counts of unlawful use of a weapon.
Shortly before 2:00 p.m. on November 9, 2021, Shaoxiong “Dennis” Zheng, 24, of Leshan, Sichuan, China was standing on a pavement in the Hyde Park neighborhood in Chicago when he was approached by Spann. The latter allegedly robbed the former at gunpoint.
Before running off, Spann allegedly shot Zheng in the torso. The Chicago resident was caught on camera running toward a black Ford Mustang, which he used to flee.
Zheng was a graduate of the University of Hong Kong in Pok Fu Lam, Hong Kong. He lived in Hyde Park while attending the University of Chicago.
The last time Zheng went home to see his family in Leshan was in 2019. Like many Chinese students in the U.S., he was not able to travel due to the new coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
In July 2021, Zheng earned his master’s degree in statistics from the University of Chicago. After being allegedly shot by Spann, the Leshan native was rushed to the University of Chicago Medical Center where he was pronounced dead.
Spann was later seen entering a store and selling Zheng’s personal items for around $200. The former was arrested on November 12, 2021.