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Motive unclear in murder of San Gabriel woman

April 12, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
Investigators reveal new details on how a woman found murdered in Alhambra was killed. The manhunt for the killer continues. A San Gabriel woman whose body was found dumped in a flood-control channel was strangled. Her body was found in the Story Park area of Alhambra. The body was dumped in Story Park. Investigators do not know if the murder occurred at the location, or whether the body was left there afterward.

She had plenty to be proud of at California State University at Long Beach. Donglei Shi was on the Dean's List. She graduated cum laude with a degree in studio art.

She adopted the name "Kyral" and on her online resume she headlined herself "passionate graphic designer." "I love art," she said, "and enjoy life."

Homicide investigators want to know who killed her. A passerby found her strangled body near a flood canal in Story Park at 4:30 a.m. Saturday.

"It was still dark. He did notice that there was no response from the victim. He then called Alhambra P.D., who responded, and they contacted Sheriff's Homicide," said L.A. County Sheriff's Deputy Rick Pedroza.

Shi's brother, Will, did not want to talk on camera, even to the Chinese language media, worried it could hurt the investigation.

The Sheriff's Department released a photo of 31-year-old Kyral Shi as detectives seek tips from anyone with information.

The Sing Tao Daily newspaper reported Shi's family came to the U.S. 10 years ago. She went to Gabrielino High School in San Gabriel, before entering Pasadena City College. She then transferred to CSU Long Beach in 2002.

Shi also worked as a part-time financial advisor and had been seen at a tax business a half-mile from the park.

Shi had lived in a San Gabriel apartment with her parents until a few months ago.

No word on why anyone would want to harm Kyral Shi, who described herself with two words: "nice" and "honest."

If you have information related to this case, you're asked to call L.A. County Sheriff's Department homicide detectives at (323) 890-5500.