College Chemistry Student Wrote Racial Slurs on Roommate's Bed & Tried to Kill Him With Pois
Yukai Yang, a former Lehigh University student from China, is accused of poisoning his roommate, Juwan Royal, and of writing racial slurs in his room.
A former Lehigh University student from China is accused of slowly poisoning his roommate by contaminating his milk and other drinks with a dangerous chemical. Yukai Yang was charged December 20 with attempted murder, aggravated assault and other charges, the Northampton County, Pennsylvania, district attorney’s office announced.
The 22-year-old Yang was previously arrested in April on charges that he wrote racial slurs on his roommate’s belongings. His now-former roommate, Juwan Royal, is black. Yang is still facing racial intimidation charges in that case. But Royal also had been feeling ill for several months and told police something suspicious was happening. Investigators said they found that Yang had been poisoning Royal with thallium, The Morning Call reports.
“This was over a period of time with small amounts of poisoning occurring,” Northampton County District Attorney John Morganelli said at a press conference. “It was added to food and drinks in the refrigerator.”
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Yang’s Roommate Told Police His Mouth Began to Burn After Drinking From a Water Bottle & He Then Fell Sick Multiple Times During a Month-Long Period
Yukai Yang is accused of poisoning his roommate, Juwan Royal, over several months, Lehigh Valley Live reports. According to prosecutors, the first incident was in February 2018, when Royal drank from a water bottle in his room and felt a burning sensation in his mouth.
District Attorney John Morganelli said at a press conference that Royal woke up Yang and told him what happened. They went to the bathroom together and Royal rinsed out his mouth. Royal said Yang told him, “so the substance that they are putting in your drink is colorless, odorless and dissolves in water.” Royal told police his mouth and tongue were sore for a few days after the incident.
On March 18, Royal called police and said he believed someone was tampering with items in his room. He said the milk in his fridge and his mouthwash had changed color, Morganelli said. On March 29, he told police he became sick again. During that incident, he was vomiting and shaking and went to a local hospital for treatment.
In April, after the racist graffiti incident, Royal reported the February incident to police and submitted blood to be tested. His blood tested positive for the toxic metal thallium, with 3.6 micrograms per liter, above the safe toxicity level, and he began treatment for thallium poisoning, Morganelli said.
According to the Centers for Disease Control:
Thallium is tasteless and odorless and has been used by murderers as a difficult to detect poison. It is found in trace amounts in the earth’s crust. Thallium has not been produced in the United States since 1984, but is imported for use in the manufacture of electronics, low temperature thermometers, optical lenses, and imitation precious jewels. It also has use in some chemical reactions and medical procedures.
Thallium was used historically as a rodenticide, but has since been banned in the United States due to its toxicity from accidental exposure.
Thallium can be absorbed into the body by inhalation, ingestion, and skin contact. Ingestion is an important route of exposure.
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The CDC says thallium exposure “can lead to nausea, painful limbs, rapid heart rate, high blood pressure, kidney damage and nerve damage.”
Royal graduated in May 2018 with a degree in African American/black studies and is also a musician aspiring to start a rap career, according to his social media profiles. Police said Royal is still recovering from his exposure to the poison. “This victim is still experiencing physical symptoms from this poisoning that occurred,” Morganelli said at the press conference.
My view: If you have a country that allowed a museum to display racist photographs that seem to compare black people from Africa with the continent's wild animals, this is the kind of negative reaction you get. It is sad that this young man is full of hate and rage, something must have happened to make him snap. Why are some people full of hate?. What is it that causes one human being to be horribly cruel to another?. Sometimes it's good to have a long look at ourselves in the mirror before we do nasty things to others. Love conquers hate.