2 men indicted in UNC professor’s death

An Orange County grand jury indicted two men Monday in the fatal robbery of UNC Chapel Hill professor Feng Liu.

Troy Arrington, 27, of Chapel Hill, and Derick Davis II, 23, of Durham are charged with first-degree murder and armed robbery in Liu’s death. They are being held in the Orange County jail.

Orange County District Attorney Jim Woodall said prosecutors are still collecting evidence in the case. It’s too early to know whether the state will seek the death penalty, he said. The only other punishment for a first-degree murder conviction in North Carolina is life in prison.

Arrington and Davis are accused of hitting Liu, 59, in the head with a landscaping rock while stealing his wallet on July 23. Passersby found the Durham resident lying in the road in a residential area near campus that is popular with pedestrians and cyclists. Liu died the next day at UNC Hospitals.

The Chinese native was an internationally known scientist and had worked as a research professor at UNC’s Eshelman School of Pharmacy since 2005. A memorial service for Liu was held Saturday on the UNC campus.