Two Charged In USC Graduate Student Slayings
The suspects, 20-year-old Bryan Barnes and 19-year-old Javier Bolden, were arrested Friday after one of the victims' cell phones helped police track the suspects. Victims Qu Ming and Wu Ying, both electrical engineering students, were shot around 1 a.m. while seated in a car parked in the 2700 block of Raymond Avenue near USC in what police believe to be a botched carjacking.
According to the Washington Post, authorities believe the double murder could make Barnes and Bolden eligible for the death penalty, warranted by special circumstance allegations.
Special circumstances are defined as "multiple murders and murder during commission of a robbery," reports LA Weekly. The district attorney's office will decide at a later time whether or not to pursue the death penalty.
Barnes and Bolden face additional charges in an attempted murder that took place at a South L.A. party in December 2011. Barnes faces a separate murder charge from a party that took place in February. The LA Times said ballistics showed shell casings from the two shootings matched the casings from the USC shootings, which helped police track down the suspects.
Barnes and Bolden were expected to appear in court Tuesday, but their arraignment has been postponed until June 25 according to City News Service. They are currently being held without bail.
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