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18-year-old attacked slain USC grad student with wrench, prosecutor says

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Jury deliberations are next in the trial for one of four defendants accused of murdering a USC graduate student from China. (KABC)

Prosecutors say Alejandra Guerrero, 18, went after Xinran Ji with a wrench after she and three others robbed the USC graduate student from China, who died from the attack.

Closing arguments in the case against Guerrero wrapped up on Tuesday and jury deliberations are next. She is the first of four defendants accused in the deadly beating of 24-year-old Xinran Ji.

Ji was walking home alone two years ago, when authorities say video captured Guerrero and her co-defendants - Andrew Garcia, Jonathan DelCarmen and Alberto Ochoa - stopping Ji on the street to rob him, armed with a metal bat and a wrench.

MORE: Suspects arrested in fatal attack on USC student

Security cameras from Ji's apartment building captured him as he returned home bloodied after the attack. Ji was later found dead inside his apartment, according to police and USC officials.

"It wasn't enough for them to strike him a few times, hit him with a bat and allow him to leave. They chased him, they hunted him down, Garcia first and who right behind? Not Ochoa, Guerrero right behind with a wrench," said prosecuting attorney John McKinney.

Guerrero's defense attorney Errol Cook said his client was not only high at the time but also the youngest in the group.
MORE: Memorial held on campus for slan USC grad student

"A 16-year-old with 19-year-old men and the prosecutor wants you to believe that she is the leader of the pack," Cook said. "There is no intent to kill anybody. There is no intent to murder here. She didn't have it. There is nothing showing that."
Guerrero's family as well as friends of Ji were in the courtroom on Tuesday. Ji's family representative Rose Tsai said his parents are following the trial from home in China closely.

"They want this message to be sent to our society and our community that crime, violent crime against others can never be tolerated," Tsai said.

Guerrero's co-defendants' trials are scheduled to start in November.
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