CHICAGO — A Northwestern University professor and a University of Oxford staffer accused of stabbing a man to death in Chicago surrendered peacefully to authorities in California, eight days after the brutal attack.
Wyndham Lathem, 42, surrendered Friday night at the Oakland federal building at around the same time that Andrew Warren, 56, was turning himself in to police in San Francisco, according to Michael McCloud, a fugitive taskforce commander with the U.S. Marshals Service.
McCloud said the surrender of the men was “negotiated,” though he declined to say how that happened, noting that his agency wasn’t directly in contact with them.
Lathem, an associate microbiology professor at Northwestern, was booked into the Alameda County jail. Warren, a Somerville College resident at Oxford University in England, was taken to the San Francisco County Jail. They will appear separately in court before being extradited to Illinois, where they face charges of first-degree murder in the killing of 26-year-old Trenton James Cornell-Duranleau. It was not immediately clear when that would happen.
Cornell-Duranleau’s mother, Charlotte Cornell, didn’t immediately reply to an email requesting comment on the arrests.
A manhunt had been underway since shortly after Cornell-Duranleau was found dead in Lathem’s Chicago apartment on the night of July 27. He had been stabbed several times in an attack so brutal that police said the knife broke.
“Both individuals will be held accountable for their actions and we hope today’s arrest brings some comfort for the victim’s family,” a Chicago police statement said.
Police said Lathem had sent a video to friends and relatives apologizing for his involvement in the crime, which he called the “biggest mistake of my life.” The video raised concern among investigators that Lathem might kill himself.
“We are also thankful both men are safely in custody and this did not end in further tragedy,” the police statement said.
Warren arrived in the United States three days before Cornell-Duranleau’s death and was seen in surveillance video leaving the building with Lathem the day of the stabbing.
McCloud said the U.S. Marshals Service learned on Wednesday that the two men might be in the San Francisco Bay area. At around noon on Friday, he said they received further information that the two were still in the area. The suspects both surrendered at about 7:30 p.m. local time, he said.
Police said Lathem had a personal relationship with Cornell-Duranleau, who moved to Chicago from the Grand Rapids, Michigan, area after receiving his cosmetology license. They are not sure how Cornell-Duranleau or Lathem knew Warren, or if Warren knew them before he arrived in the United States.
In a bizarre twist, police said that on the day of the slaying, but before the body had been discovered, Lathem and Warren drove about 80 miles (128 kilometers) northwest to Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, where one of them made a $1,000 cash donation to the public library there in Cornell-Duranleau’s name. Lake Geneva police said the man making the donation did not give his name.
“I’ve never seen where suspects in a homicide would make a donation in the victim’s name,” said Lake Geneva police Lt. Edward Gritzner.
On the night of the slaying, police said the front desk of the high-rise building where Lathem lived in Chicago’s trendy River North neighborhood received an anonymous call from a person who said that a crime had been committed in Lathem’s 10th floor apartment. When police opened the door they found Cornell-Duranleau’s body.
Police also said that by the time they found the body on the night of July 27, Cornell-Duranleau had been dead for 12-15 hours.