(Reuters) - A 24-year-old man accused of killing a University of Utah student from China and also suspected in a homicide last week in Colorado was arrested in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, police said.
Austin Boutain was taken into custody without incident at a public library, said Detective Keith Horrocks of the Salt Lake City Police Department.
Boutain and his wife, Kathleen Boutain, 23, are also wanted in an investigation into a homicide in Golden, Colorado, according to police there.
The victim of Monday night’s murder in Utah was identified as ChenWei Guo, 23, who was parked near Red Butte Canyon when he was shot dead during what investigators believe was a failed carjacking attempt.
The Salt Lake Tribune newspaper, citing police, reported that the couple was camping in the mountains just outside the city and that Kathleen Boutain had gone to the university campus to report that her husband had assaulted her. Guo was killed shortly afterward, the newspaper reported.
Kathleen Boutain was being treated for minor injuries and held in jail on unrelated charges following her arrest on Monday night, University of Utah Police Chief Dale Brophy said.
Police in Golden said they found the body of a 63-year-old man last week after being asked by Utah police to conduct a welfare check at a trailer park.
That death is being investigated as a homicide and the Boutains are suspects, the Golden Police Department said in a statement.
Classes were cancelled on Tuesday at the University of Utah, where officials remembered Guo as “extraordinarily outgoing, creative, smart and extremely engaged.”
A pre-computer science student and peer adviser in the school’s International Student and Scholar Services Office, Guo also was an interpreter and technology supporter at the Salt Lake City-based Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, according to a social media profile.
Speaking in Beijing, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said the Chinese embassy in the United States immediately requested information from police, and “urged police to quickly break the case” and provide assistance to the family.
She also noted that the embassy reminded Chinese citizens in the United States to pay attention to security due to recent prominent social and security issues in some areas, and the frequency of knife and gun incidents.
Reporting by Barbara Goldberg in New York and Dan Whitcomb in Los Angeles; Additional reporting by Brendan O'Brien in Milwaukee, Angela Moon in New York and Michael Martina in Beijing; editing by Dan Grebler and Grant McCool