ABC ’20/20’ features the tragic murder case of Yingying Zhang, who was a visiting scholar at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. Though the case received due justice in court, the same cannot be said for those who have to live with the painful memories of her untimely death. One cannot perhaps forget the statements made by her mother in tears about her dreams of seeing Zhang married or her being a grandmother never coming true.
As painful as it was for her, another person who stood by their side was Zhang’s boyfriend, Xiaolin Hou, who was, allegedly set to marry her the same year she went missing.
Who is Xiaolin Hou?
Xiaolin Hou was Yingying Zhang’s boyfriend at the time of her death. The two graduated at the top of their class and went to Peking University together. In the segment with ’20/20,’ he said, “ I met her in the first meeting of the classmates. I have a deep impression of Yingying at that meeting. She has a beautiful face and a beautiful voice.” Zhang’s family along with Hou was devastated to hear the news of her disappearance, nonetheless, determined to find her, they came to the US. They also did their own search by putting out flyers and following up on tips about Zhang’s whereabouts. He even spoke about how they almost thought they had found her when a couple of sources stated that they had seen her. He said, “They have checked the videos, but unfortunately that girl was not Yingying.”
Hou, thus, with Zhang’s family waited long before the devastating details of Zhang’s death would surface. During the trial of the case, he said, “ What that criminal did… is too painful for a young girl. I will never give up hope to find her… and if we don’t find her, then everything seems hopeless.” He also spoke on behalf of the family when Brendt Christensen was sentenced to life. It was in many ways a testament of how they felt about Christensen not getting a death penalty. Hou, clearly in pain, said “ The result today (seemed) to tell me that I can kill anyone, and I can kill anyone with all kinds of cruel matters, and I would not need to die for it. And I better take some drugs and alcohol before I do it. I better act as a loner, and then people will not think I’m a dangerous person.”
— Lauren Kostiuk (@laurenkostiuk_) July 18, 2019
Thus, even though formal justice was given to them, the pain and suffering are far from over for Hou and Zhang’s family. They collectively also thanked everyone who was a part of the investigation, for helping them in various capacities.
Where is Xiaolin Hou Now?
Xiaolin Hou has a LinkedIn profile, but apart from that, his social media presence is relatively less. In any case, one can hope that he is able to overcome the tragic death of Zhang and find happiness in the years to come.
Read More: Where is Brendt Christensen Today?