URBANA, Ill. — The Champaign County Coroner confirmed on Monday that a body found in Tolono Township several miles south of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign campus is that of Vicente Mundo, a student who was reported missing last week.
Since first responding to the scene near 900N and 1000E in rural Champaign County on Saturday morning, the Champaign County Sheriff's Office has been treating the incident as a homicide. The coroner’s office confirmed that again on Monday.
Since the initial missing person report, the case has been under investigation by several agencies, including the Champaign County Sheriff's Office, Champaign Police Department, Champaign County Coroner's Office, Champaign County State’s Attorney's Office, Federal Bureau of Investigations, and the University of Illinois Police Department.
U. of I. Police set up a Web page requesting the community’s assistance on Monday. Police are still looking for Mr. Mundo’s car, a silver 2006 Acura TL with dark tinted windows, matte black tire rims and Chicago Bears vanity license plate number 2557.
Anyone with information should contact the University of Illinois Police Department at 217-333-1216, the Champaign Police Department at 217-351-4545 or the Champaign County Sheriff’s Office at 217-384-1204. Callers may also remain anonymous by calling Champaign County Crimestoppers at 217-373-8477 (TIPS) or by visiting www.373tips.com or by texting keyword "CCTIP" plus the information to 274637 (CRIMES).
U. of I. Police Chief Jeff Christensen also sent the following letter to students, faculty and staff.
Dear campus community member:
We write unfortunately to inform you of a campus tragedy, the death of Vicente Mundo, an undergraduate student from Chicago studying Statistics. All of us are deeply saddened by this news, and our thoughts are with his family and friends. We are reaching out to make sure they have the support they need following this unimaginable loss.
Initial indications are that Mr. Mundo’s death was not an accident. We want to share with you the facts as we know them and remind you of the resources available to you on campus. We do not believe this to be a random act.
You may have heard or seen information recently about Mr. Mundo, who was reported missing last week. Many people in our campus community worked together to do everything they could to help find him, and are distraught to know that Mr. Mundo was found deceased several miles south of campus.
Though we believe that another person is responsible for his death, we want to assure you that we do not believe this presents an ongoing threat to our campus community. Investigators from U. of I. Police, Champaign Police, the Champaign County Sheriff’s Office, the Champaign County Coroner, the Champaign County State’s Attorney and the FBI are working together to find the responsible party. We plan to keep our campus informed of developments.
The community can assist in the investigation by clicking here to visit the U. of I. Police website.
At the U. of I. Police Department, we are deeply troubled any time harm comes to one of our students. We have a responsibility to Mr. Mundo’s family, his friends and our campus community to bring whoever is responsible to justice, and we will never give up on that promise until that happens.
We are a campus community, and now is a time to come together. In the coming days, we hope students will find support in one another, their families and mentors, but we also want to remind students of the counseling services on campus. The website of the Counseling Center with hours, location and services available is http://counselingcenter.illinois.edu/.
U.of I. Police has a full complement of officers patrolling campus, and we are going to be as visible as we can in the coming weeks. We always have police officers from the Champaign and Urbana police departments supplementing our force. We will be here for you when you need us. That has always been true, and it certainly is not going to change now.
Jeffrey T. Christensen
Chief of Police and Executive Director of Public Safety