— Jim Roberts (@nycjim) October 27, 2013
Mingdong Chen, 25, is described by The Daily News as a “transient” and an “illegal immigrant.” On the night of October 27, he was being held in a Brooklyn police station, charged with stabbing his cousin’s wife and her four young children to death with a meat cleaver.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Chen’s Charged With Murdering His Cousins With a Meat Cleaver
— Michael Gabrill (@michael_gabrill) October 27, 2013
He’s accused of murdering Qiao Zhen Li, 37, along with her kids – Linda Zhuo, 9, Amy Zhuo, 7; Kevin Zhuo, 5; and William Zhuo, 1, with a meat cleaver in the Sunset Park neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York. NYPD say the murders took place on October 27, cops charged Chen with five counts of first-degree murder and second degree murder. In addition to a single charge of assaulting a cop.
The bodies were found scattered around the family’s home, Qiao Zhen Li was found with Kevin Zhuo in the kitchen along with the meat cleaver that cops think were used in the crime. The other children were found together in a bedroom, all of the victims had stab wounds to their necks.
2. The Family Tried Get Chen to Leave Their Home Recently
The family tried to evict Chen from their home recently. A neighbor, Xiaowe Yang, told The Daily News: “She told him to go home. The guy is very poor. He had no home. He had no place to live when he came to New York. She told him ‘You just leave my house.'” It’s reported that Chen had been living in Chicago and moved in with Qiao Zhen and her family less than two weeks ago. He moved to the US in 2004, it’s reported by CBS New York that he is an illegal immigrant.
He has no criminal record in New York and has stayed in different locations throughout the country since moving here. The NYPD think he may have stayed with the family previously.
3. A Source Said He Murdered the Kids Because ‘They Had Everything’
His crimes may have been motivated out of jealously. A police source told The Daily News that, “He felt they [the children] had everything and that he had nothing. They were doing well and he was struggling just to get by.” Sources say that he confessed to the stabbing during questioning at the 66th precinct in Brooklyn. He speaks little English an his interview was conducted through a Mandarin translator.
4. Chen Attempted to Flee the Scene
— Ali Wolf (@awolfTV) October 27, 2013
On October 26, it’s reported that Qiao Zhen Li attempted to call her husband over concerns about Chen. When she couldn’t get in contact with him, she called Chen’s mother in China, who in-turn reached out to a family member in Brooklyn. It was this family member who performed her own welfare check on the family’s home on 55th and 9th in Brooklyn. Chen opened the door to the woman, covered in blood. She immediately dialed 911 and detectives descended on the home at around 11 p.m. on October 26. The New York Post says that Chen tried to flee just after they arrived and was arrested trying to escape through the backyard.
5. A Neighbor Says Chen is ‘Lazy’ and ‘Crazy’
After moving to the US in 2004 from Fujian province in China, Chen living the Chinatown neighborhood in Manhattan. A neighbor, Gao Yun, told The New York Post, “He’s lazy, he doesn’t work too hard. The guy is crazy.” After living in Chinatown, Chen went to Chicago where he’s believed to have worked as a cook.