21-Year-Old Man Found Guilty in 2014 Beating Death of USC Engineering Grad Student

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A 21-year-old man has been convicted in the 2014 beating death of a University of Southern California graduate student.

An LAPD detective testified that Andrew Garcia, left, told him he and four friends decided to rob Xinran Ji near USC. Ji was beaten to death. (Credit: Al Seib/Los Angeles Times)

After deliberating for about two hours, jurors found Andrew Garcia guilty of one count each of first-degree murder, robbery, attempted robbery and assault with a deadly weapon, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said Thursday in a news release.

The deadly attack happened just before 1 a.m. on July 24, 2014, when 24-year-old engineering student Xinran Ji was walking to his apartment in the 1200 block of West 30th Street after attending a study session. The D.A.’s office said Garcia, who was a teenager at the time of the attack along with three other teens, tried to rob Ji hitting him several times with a metal baseball bat and a wrench.

Xinran Ji, who was killed July 24, 2014, near USC, is shown in a sign held up outside a court hearing on Aug. 11, 2014. (Credit: KTLA)

Ji was able to run away from the group of attackers, but prosecutors said Garcia caught up to him and continued to beat Ji with the bat.

Ji somehow made his way back to his apartment, leaving a bloody trail behind.

His body was found by his roommate about 7 a.m.

Alejandra Guerrero, shown at an earlier hearing, was convicted Oct. 13, 2016, of murder for her role in the 2014 killing of a USC graduate student. (Credit: Al Seib/ Los Angeles Times)

Eighteen-year-old Alejandra Guerrero, who was 16 at the time of her participation in Ji’s beating, was convicted of first-degree murder, robbery, attempted robbery and assault with a deadly weapon in October 2016.

She faces life in prison.

Garcia is scheduled to be sentenced on July 11.

Jonathan Del Carmen, 21, and Alberto Ochoa, 19, were also charged in the deadly beating pleaded not guilty to murder and other charges in August 2014. They are both awaiting trial.

Prosecutors said Garcia, Guerrero, Del Carmen and Ochoa also committed a second attack on a man and woman at Dockweiler State Beach two hours after they attacked Ji.

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