Metro-East News

Visiting Chinese scholar at University of Illinois reported missing

A 26-year-old visiting scholar from China has been reported missing from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, according to university police.

Yingying Zhang was last heard from at 1:30 p.m. June 9, and no one has been able to get ahold of her since.

Police say Zhang boarded an MTD Teal line bus at the south shelter at Orchard Downs on Friday, and exited the bus at Springfield and Mathews avenues in Urbana just before 2 p.m. Friday.

Security video from a parking garage in Urbana shows Zhang standing on the east side of Goodwin Avenue as a black Saturn Astra pulls up beside her. She spoke to the driver for some time before getting into the vehicle, which then drove north on Goodwin Avenue.

University of Illinois police said they are working around the clock to search for Zhang. They’re working with rideshare companies like Uber and Lyft, as well as cell phone companies, and are following any leads the public gives to them.

Zhang has shoulder length brown hair and glasses and was wearing a charcoal gray hat with a white logo on it and a white and pink flannel long sleeve shirt, jeans, white shows and a navy backpack.

If you have any information on the case, you can contact the University of Illinois Police Department at 217-333-1216.