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Police have identified a person of interest in the slaying of a 26-year-old, newly engaged Yale graduate student, who was shot to death last week in a seemingly “targeted” attack.
New Haven Police named 29-year-old Qinxuan Pan, a graduate student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, as a person of interest in the death of Kevin Jiang Wednesday as the investigation into the mysterious death continues.
Jiang was killed around 8:30 p.m. on Feb. 6 after spending a long day ice skating and ice fishing at a nearby lake with his fiancée Zion Perry, according to the New Haven Independent.
Police said Jiang was shot to death “multiple times” on Lawrence Street not far from Perry’s apartment in what authorities believe had been a “targeted” attack, according to New Haven Police Chief Otoniel Reyes.
Reyes said during a press conference Wednesday that a car accident had occurred before the fatal shooting.
Reyes said that authorities believe Pan “was in the area at the time of the shooting” and said the MIT graduate student is wanted for questioning in the case.
“We are not prepared to identify him as the shooter in this investigation at this point,” he said. “The only information we can put out is that he is a person of interest.”
Pan has two active warrants for his arrest—one in Massachusetts and another in Connecticut—in connection with a stolen vehicle that authorities believe was taken in Massachusetts.
“I am asking that the public knows that Mr. Pan should be considered armed and dangerous and that extreme caution should be used if you come in contact with this individual,” Reyes said.
Pan last lived in Malden, Massachusetts and was last seen at a Best Western Hotel in New Haven, Connecticut. Reyes said police don’t believe Pan is in the New Haven area any longer and believe he’s likely “out of the state,” but said “anything is possible at this point.”
Reyes said Pan allegedly “came in contact” with the North Haven Police “sometime after our homicide,” but police there were unaware at the time that a homicide had taken place nearby.
“It was the fruits of that investigation that put him on our radar,” Reyes said. “We’re exploring the information that was yielded from that encounter.”
Jiang’s new fiancée Zion Perry had recently graduated from MIT in 2020 with a degree in biological engineering, according to the New Haven Register.
Reyes declined to comment on whether authorities believe Pan and Perry had known one another but said investigators are “exploring absolutely every angle” and are “not ruling out” the possibility of a personal motive for the crime.
Authorities are hoping to bring the person responsible for the “senseless” crime to justice soon.
“I also want to thank the community for their patience in this investigation and following this incident we know that this incident has rocked our community, particularly our community in east rock, particularly our community at Yale university,” he said. “We want you to know that we stand with you as we stand with every one of our community members and we’re working day and night on this investigation to uncover exactly what happened here and bring the individual to justice.”
Anyone with information about Pan’s current whereabouts is urged to contact New Haven homicide detectives at (203) 946-6304 or police department’s anonymous tip line at 1-866-888-8477.
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