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Google engineer accused of beating wife to death before police found him bloodied with ‘blank stare’

Liren Chen is accused of murdering his wife Xuanyi Yu at their house in Santa Clara, California (ABC7 News)
Liren Chen is accused of murdering his wife Xuanyi Yu at their house in Santa Clara, California (ABC7 News)

A Google software engineer was found “spattered with blood” after he allegedly beat his wife to death inside their Santa Clara, California home, according to the Santa Clara District Attorney’s Office.

Liren Chen, 27, faces a murder charge in the death of his wife whose battered body was found near him when police responded to the grisly crime scene on 16 January.

Officers arrived at the home on Valley Way around 11am after an acquaintance of Mr Chen and his wife who was concerned for their safety called for a welfare check, authorities said.

The acquaintance told officers that Mr Chen was refusing to answer the phone and the door. He stated that he then saw him “motionless on his knees, had his hands in the air and was staring blankly,” according to a press release issued by the prosecutor’s office.

Police made their way into the home where they found Mr Chen covered in blood. His right hand was extremely swollen and purple and he had blood on his clothing, legs, arms, and hands. He also had scratches on his arm, authorities said.

Mr Chen’s wife’s body was found directly behind him in the living room where he had been standing, according to authorities. She had severe blunt force injuries to her head and was pronounced dead at the scene.

The wife’s identity was not released by prosecutors, but the San Francisco Standard, citing property records, reported that her name was Xuanyi Yu and that she also worked for Google, according to her LinkedIn, which has since been changed to say “In Remembrance.”

Property records show that Mr Chen was married to Xuanyi Yu and that the couple owned a home at 714 Valley Way, where police responded on the night of the incident.

According to LinkedIn, Mr Chen has worked at Google since 2020 and attended Tsinghua University in China and the University of California San Diego along with Ms Yu.

Mr Chen was transported to the hospital where he will be arraigned on the murder charge, the prosecutor’s release stated.

“Domestic violence deaths have been falling in our county but that does not measure the depth and destructiveness of the violence,” Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen said in a statement. “Anyone who feels that they or someone else is being abused by their partners, please reach out your local law enforcement agency. You are not alone. We can help.”