CHICAGO – The mother of a Chicago stabbing victim said Thursday that the family does not know the Northwestern University professor or the University of Oxford employee that police are searching for in the slaying, and she asked for privacy as relatives grieve.
Charlotte Cornell, the mother of Trenton Cornell-Duranleau, issued a statement to The Associated Press as police said the search for Wyndham Lathem, 42, and Andrew Warren, 56, in the slaying had narrowed. Police have not released a possible motive or said how they linked the suspects to the killing.
Cornell’s statement said: “Our Family is deeply saddened by the death of our son. It is our hope that the person or persons responsible for his death are brought to justice. We are asking that you allow our family to process and grieve this tragedy privately. We are asking all media outlets to not contact our family, friends or associates. When we have had sufficient time to mourn our child’s passing, we will release a more in depth statement if we believe it is appropriate to do so.”
In a brief telephone interview, Cornell said the family in Michigan – where Cornell-Duranleau was born and raised before moving to Chicago – doesn’t know the suspects. She declined to say whether she or other family members had ever heard of them before her son was killed because the two suspects “are at large and there’s an ongoing investigation.”
She said she hoped her written statement would provide some relief for relatives who have been inundated with calls from reporters around the world.
“Maybe this (statement) can calm things down for my kids, our parents,” she said. “We are asking that we have a little space during this time.”
Chicago Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said Thursday that investigators believe they know where Lathem and Warren are or are heading, but he declined to elaborate.
“The search has intensified and has narrowed,” he said.
A judge issued first-degree murder warrants for the two men on Monday, four days after Cornell-Duranleau was found stabbed to death inside an apartment where Lathem lives in Chicago’s River North neighbourhood. Guglielmi said surveillance video shows the two men leaving the building the night of the slaying.