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Yang saga ends

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

BENTON -- Ru Jun "Richard" Yang was sentenced to 20 years in the Missouri Department of Corrections Monday putting an end to a tumultuous six-and-

a-half years which saw Yang plead guilty to the murder of his wife then flee the country.

Scott County Judge David Dolan handed down Yang's sentence Monday, allowing the victim's son, Weifing Xu, to address the court. Xu began by displaying the May 4, 2005, issue of the Standard Democrat which showed a smiling Yang walking next to Scott County Sheriff Rick Walter. He then told of the loss of his mother and how Yang used the system to flee the country. He said he was pleased that the system was able to finally bring Yang to justice.

Dolan asked Yang several times during the sentencing if he understood the charges and each time Yang replied "yes." Before the case was concluded, Dolan asked Yang if he wanted to change his plea to which the reply was "no."

Yang's case began on July 4, 1998, when Yang's wife, Xu Xue Qin (Louise) reportedly had gone home to find her estranged husband inside. After the two struggled, he chased her through the house stabbing her repeatedly and leaving a bloody trail. Approximately 45 minutes later, Yang called police and said, "I killed my wife."

The murder came as a surprise to police as there had been no previous domestic disturbance calls, however, officer later found out the two were going through a "messy divorce."

Yang later pled guilty to the charge of second degree murder and was released from custody until formal sentencing after posting bond in 1999. However, Yang fled the country and relocated to Mexico where he worked as the manager of a restaurant. He stayed in Mexico until he was recaptured last month.