Oxford University employee and U.S. professor charged with Chicago murder

Wyndham Lathem, a Northwestern University microbiologist accused of stabbing a man to death, and Andrew Warren, an acquaintance from Oxford University, have been charged with first degree murder after being extradited to Chicago.

The two men, suspected of murdering 26-year-old James Cornell-Duranleau, a hairstylist from Chicago, who was stabbed to death almost 50 times in July, arrived in Chicago for interrogation late on Saturday, according to the WGN9 broadcaster.

Investigators say Lathem had a personal relationship with Cornell-Duranleau. Autopsy results indicated that methamphetamine and a small amount of alcohol were found in his body.

The Cook County medical examiner's office released the findings in Trenton James Cornell-Duranleau's death on Friday. Lathem picked up Warren at O'Hare International Airport, Deenihan said.

Detectives have ruled out a love triangle between an Oxford University employee, a U.S. professor and their alleged murder victim, who was found with more than 40 stab wounds, police have said.

Lathem, who has been sacked as a microbiology professor at Northwestern University in IL, was in a personal relationship with the victim, police have said. He had been stabbed 47 times in his back, chest, shoulder and abdomen.

Cornell-Duranleau, a MI native, had been asleep in Lathem's high-rise Chicago condo when Lathem let Warren into the 10th-floor unit around 4:30 a.m. on July 27 - treading carefully so as not to wake the victim.

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Cornell woke up and began to scream and fight back, at which point Warren walked in and put his hands on the victim's mouth, prosecutors said.

"What I can tell you, it was not domestic in nature - like a husband/wife or boyfriend/boyfriend or love triangle. It was a little bit more dark and disturbing", Chicago police Detective Cmdr. Afterward, Warren was to shoot Lathem while Lathem was in the act of stabbing Warren to death, she said. Investigators later discovered that Lathem was staying at a hotel close to the apartment building, and was seen with the victim on surveillance video in the area the day before.

When the victim's body was moved, he appeared to have been almost decapitated, prosecutors said, and he had sustained multiple wounds that would have been mortal in and of themselves.

Warren and Lathem fled, sparking a nine-day, nationwide manhunt, during which officials said Lathem sent a video message to friends and family members, allegedly apologizing for his involvement in the crime.

Lathem had described the killing as the biggest mistake of his life, according to Chicago police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi.

Lathem and Warren were scheduled to appear in bond court at 1 p.m.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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