San Jose, CA — USC has been hit with a wrongful death suit stemming from the murder of two Chinese students back in April. Victims Ming Qu and Ying Wu who were both electrical engineering students and a month shy of graduating were gunned down inside their car after a botched robbery attempt.
According to reports, back in April 11 of this year, both Ming Qu and Ying Wu were inside Qu’s BMW when they were shot by the suspects. The incident took place around 1 in the morning, the car was double parked on the 2700 Raymond Avenue which is near West 27th Street a few blocks, approximately 335 feet from the USC Campus.
The suspects were named as Javier Bolden, 19 years old and Bryan Barnes, 20 years old are both currently facing possible capital murder charges. The parents of the slain victims Xiyong Wu and Meinan Yin (parents of Wu) and Xiaohong Fei and Wanzi Qu (parents of Qu) filed for a wrongful death lawsuit at the Los Angeles Superior Court back in May claiming that USC has a liability in the deaths of its students.
A wrongful death is part of a personal injury claim, a wrongful death happens when someone gets killed because of misconduct or negligence of another person, an entity or a company. In the case of USC, the wrongful death claim against USC is a wrongful death premises liability since the parents believe that it was the responsibility of the school to ensure the safety of its students.
But the University of California has issued a rebuttal against the claim, the school has issued that they are not liable for what had happened to Ming Qu and Ying Wu because the incident occurred outside of the USC campus, it was not a school-related incident, and it was a random act of crime. Quoting the USC court papers: “The murders were random, unpredictable and unconnected to USC. Nonetheless, the parents seek to hold USC civily liable for the perpetrators’ criminal acts by bringing this wrongful-death suit.”
The school further added that the claimants were unable to provide proof that it was the school’s responsibility to be liable for any crimes that are committed outside of the campus. They stated, “Boiled down to its core elements, the complaint is nothing more than an attempt to hold USC financially responsible for damages inflicted on its students by the criminal behavior of third parties unrelated to the USC.” USC is requesting the court to dismiss the wrongful death claim and they do seem to have a strong point and chance to get what they want. Important thing to remember in a wrongful death lawsuit, the claimant must be able to prove the liability of the party that they are suing.
Meanwhile, a crowd gathered at the LA courthouse protest to the postponement of the arraignment hearing of the suspects in the case. This was the second time that the arraignment hearing was cancelled and moved to another date. The next schedule is on July 18. The crowd (composed of Chinese students) waved a banner that contained signatures of people and they were going to give these signatures they’ve gathered to the district attorney’s office.
According to the judge that canceled the hearing, they were giving time for the defense attorneys to gather their enormous evidence against the prosecution (or possible that the judge is a racist because the victims here are Chinese students). One thing for sure, two people are dead and their friends, relatives, and community are still crying out for justice to be served. Justice delayed is still justice denied.