UPDATE: New details released in court about Altoona homicide - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

UPDATE: New details about Altoona homicide revealed in court

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Ying Xiong Ying Xiong

Eau Claire County (WQOW)- We're learning a lot of new information Friday on a murder investigation in Altoona, including the name of the victim.

The Eau Claire County District Attorney says Panhia Vue was found dead in a shed in her backyard on Tuesday.

Ying Xiong appeared in court through video conference for the first time Friday since being arrested in the death of Vue.  He'd been living with her in this Altoona home on 10th street.

"Ms. Vue was last seen at the residence on the evening of June 9th, 2013 and that Mr. Xiong was also at the residence and in the same bedroom as Ms. Vue.  A subsequent search of the residence revealed evidence of a struggle in the bedroom," says Eau Claire County District Attorney Gary King.

King went on to say that Xiong gets angry when he drinks and was intoxicated Sunday night when Vue was last seen. Her body wasn't discovered until Tuesday.

"The body was located in the corner of the shed and the upper torso of Ms. Vue was badly burned," King says.  "An autopsy was performed on Vue and the cause of death was determined to be asphyxiation due to strangulation."

King says Xiong fled around 6 a.m. Tuesday morning.  He was located in Marathon County Wednesday afternoon.  Officers spotted him and say once Xiong realized he was being followed, he pulled over, got out of his car and ran. 

"He was subsequently apprehended," states King.  "He was found to be in possession of over $19,000 in cash."

The district attorney says there was a history of domestic issues between Xiong and Vue but they were not married.

"Additional investigation determined that Mr. Xiong has family in Marathon County and is currently going through a divorce in that county," King reveals.  "He made statements to people in Marathon County that resulted in multiple calls to authorities."

Xiong is being held on a $500,000 cash bond.  His next court appearance is scheduled for Tuesday.

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Eau Claire (WQOW) – An Eau Claire County judge has set bond for the suspect in an Altoona homicide at $500,000. Ying Xiong was in court Friday morning for a bond hearing on a charge of first degree intentional homicide.

The Eau Claire County District Attorney says they found the body of Panhia Vue in a shed at a home on 10th Street in Altoona on Tuesday. Her upper torso was badly burned. The autopsy also found asphyxiation due to strangulation.

Law enforcement says the couple resided together and had domestic issues between them. He is currently going through a divorce in Marathon County where he has family. The woman who died is not his estranged wife.

Police say Xiong gets angry when he drinks and was intoxicated Sunday night. They say he fled Tuesday morning and switched cars in Lake Hallie.

Panhia was last seen Sunday in a bedroom at the house. A police search showed evidence of a struggle in that bedroom.

Police say when Ying was arrested after a foot chase in Marathon County, he had $19,000 in cash on him.

We will have more on this story tonight at 5 on WQOW News 18.

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Altoona (WQOW) - The suspicious death investigation in Altoona is now being called a homicide investigation and a man has been arrested.

Ying Xiong is in the Eau Claire County Jail.  He was booked on suspicion of first degree intentional homicide. 

Online court records show his address matches the home on 10th street in Altoona where the investigation was launched on Tuesday afternoon, when a body was found.

Chief James Small with the Altoona Police Department says, "We're about 48 hours after the initial 911 call and we have a suspect in custody."

Ying Xiong was arrested on Wednesday in Marathon County after being spotted by a Mosinee officer at a restaurant. Police say Xiong realized he was being followed, pulled over, got out of his car and took off.

Chief Small says, "We had requested that law enforcement in Marathon County attempt to locate a potential suspect in this case that we're working here. They were able to catch him and place him in custody."

Investigators say Xiong was not armed.  At this point, we still don't know who the victim was.

"I understand most of the time a victim is named first and then a suspect is named later and so on. There's some unusual circumstances in this case that are making it so that we can't identify the victim at this point," says Chief Small.  

Chief Small wants the public to know this was an isolated incident. 

"I don't think that Altoona is any more dangerous today than it was a week ago or than it's going to be a year from now. I think it's still a safe community and I don't think the public needs to be worried," says Chief Small. 

Altoona resident and neighbor Tom Beck says, "I'm glad that it happened so fast, that they caught the person and hopefully that will help settle the neighborhood down and hopefully it's bringing closure to the family."

Beck lives right next to the home where the homicide happened and says he recognizes the suspect, Ying Xiong.

"Yes he lived here, I have spoken to him and really never expected that," says Beck.

Chief Small talked about the collaboration that helped move the investigation along.

He says, "Numerous different agencies have come to help us with this, we couldn't do it without all their help. I mean Altoona is a small department, we have 12 officers. We have more than 12 officers here right now. So it's very critical that we had the help that we go, numerous agencies and Marathon County have assisted us and it's been a great collaborative effort."

Altoona Police say the county crisis response team has been working with those who live in the home on 10th street.  The police chief says they have investigators in contact with them frequently to make sure their needs are being met.

We could learn more about the homicide investigation tomorrow morning, when Xiong has a bond hearing.

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Press Release from Altoona Police:

 6/13/2013

As previously indicated, the Altoona Police Department, with assistance from the Department of Justice – Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) and Eau Claire County Sheriff's Office, is currently investigating a suspicious death that was reported on 10th St W on June 11, 2013. The death has been determined to be a homicide. 

The Altoona Police Department has a suspect in custody at the Eau Claire County Jail.  The suspect is Ying Xiong, 41, of Altoona.  Xiong was located in Marathon County on June 12.  He will appear at a hearing in Eau Claire County at 11 a.m. on Friday morning.

Altoona Police Department do not expect to officially identify the victim today, and no additional information is expected to released today. It is anticipated that additional information will be available at the Friday Morning bond hearing for Mr. Xiong.

Altoona Police Department personnel and law enforcement personnel from numerous other agencies are working diligently to complete this investigation.  Anyone with information about the investigation should contact Altoona Police at  (715) 839-6090.   

Based upon evidence collected at this point, investigators believe there is no public safety threat. 

A defendant enjoys the presumption of innocence. The prosecution must prove its allegations at trial beyond a reasonable doubt.

James Small

Police/Fire Chief

City of Altoona

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Eau Claire County (WQOW) – An Altoona man is in the Eau Claire County Jail Thursday, he was booked in on a charge of first degree intentional homicide. Police have not confirmed if this is in fact the man wanted for a death investigation in Altoona.

According to open records, the man, 41-year-old Ying Xiong, lives at the same address where the Altoona Police Department is investigating a suspicious death.

According to records from the Marathon County Jail, Xiong is the same man who was arrested in Mosinee last night after a police chase. He was booked into the jail last night and released to the Eau Claire County Jail.  

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Press Release from Altoona Police:

On June 11, 2013 Altoona Police responded to a report of a deceased person in the 1200 block of 10th St W. Responding personnel discovered one person dead.  The circumstances surrounding the death require investigation and an investigation into the cause of death was initiated.  An autopsy was performed on the victim today.  Results of the autopsy are not yet available.

At this time no additional information can be released regarding this investigation.  The investigation remains active.

THERE IS NO DANGER TO THE PUBLIC

It is presently unknown when information will be released regarding this investigation.

Altoona Police are being assisted by Eau Claire County Sheriff's Office, WI Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation, and the Wisconsin Department of Justice Crime Lab.

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Altoona (WQOW) - An autopsy is underway, and Altoona police hope it will provide some clues.

On Tuesday afternoon, officers could be seen at a home on 10th Street. The Altoona Police chief has confirmed they are investigating a suspicious death. The yard remained taped off Wednesday. Along with Altoona Police, the Eau Claire County Sheriff's Department and the local crime scene unit, officers from the state's Division of Criminal Investigation were at the home Tuesday.

Altoona Police Chief James Small says an autopsy is underway to determine whether the death was accidental or not. More information could be released later Wednesday night.

We have asked police repeatedly whether there is a concern for public safety. This is a question many of you at home have been wanting an answer to.  We are still waiting on a response from Altoona police.

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UDPATE: Altoona Police Chief James Small says an autopsy is underway to determine whether the death was accidental or not. More information could be released later on Wednesday.

 

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Altoona (WQOW)- Yellow police tape circles an Altoona home. Police Chief James Small says they are investigating a suspicious death. 

 

Officers responded to the home on 10th street around 3:30 Tuesday afternoon. 

Aside from acknowledging they are investigating circumstances surrounding the death, Altoona police say they will not release any more information until Wednesday. 

Officers from the state's Department of Criminal Investigation could be seen at the home Tuesday along with Eau Claire County sheriff's deputies and the local crime scene unit. Much of the yard was roped off with yellow police tape. A WQOW News 18 reporter who was at the scene says officers spent part of the afternoon searching what appeared to be a shed in the backyard and interviewing family members.

As the afternoon wore on neighbors were watching closely. "I'm not worried that it was somebody that was out randomly who did this.  I'm more concerned if it was something personal," said neighbor Thomas Beck. "I don't know how to act.  I'm not going to panic about it and lock up all my windows and lock up all my doors.  But I'm not going to lie awake at night."

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5:58 p.m. UPDATE: Altoona Police Chief James Small says they are investigating the circumstances of a suspicious death. The police department will not release any more information until Wednesday.

5:02 p.m. UPDATE: A local crime scene unit has just arrived on scene.

Altoona (WQOW) - A source close to the investigation says they are at the scene of a suspicious death in Altoona. Police were called to the home around 3:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Our reporter on scene says there are around 10 officers from both the Altoona Police Department and the Eau Claire County Sheriff's Department. They've been speaking with family members and concentrating on the backyard, specifically looking at a shed. Police tape is strung across the yard.

The home is located on 10th Street in Altoona.

We will update this story as soon as we have more information and during the 6 & 10 p.m. newscasts.

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