Loughborough Uni investigating after student assaults housemate with rolling pin

The PhD student assaulted his housemate because she was playing music too loudly

Zhaolun Li has been sentenced this week for the brutal assault of a fellow female student with a rolling pin. The assailant, Li, explained that he lashed out because of what he described as overly loud music in the shared accommodation.

The incident occurred on the 24th of July this year, and Mr. Li appeared in Leicester Crown Court on the 22nd of October where he was handed an 18-month sentence suspended for two years.

Prosecutor Barnaby Shaw told the court that on the night of 24th July, Li heard the music playing at 1am in his block and proceeded to charge into the bathroom the victim was cleaning, the Leicester Mercury reports.

Shaw stated: “He kicked her and taking hold of her with his left hand, he began striking her, she thinks, 10 times with the rolling pin… Some blows hit her on the head, others hit on her hands as she tried to protect herself.”

A university sub-warden then entered the premise upon hearing the victim’s cries. The victim stated that this “[saved] my life”. Leicestershire Police were called to investigate.

Li told the officers he was having difficulty sleeping due to the music and had academic pressure and stress building up causing him to lash out.

This act of violence has had adverse implications for the victim, as Mr Shaw revealed: “Her academic year was effectively curtailed as a result of this… It has put her back a year and that will have significant financial implications for her… She also describes the ongoing effects of the injuries and the severe impact this has had on her confidence.”

Although Li was arrested and faced consequences he wrote a letter to the victim stating: “Every time I look back, I can’t forgive myself.”

Li’s legal representation claimed the university was standing by Li after the attack, as he has continued to work on research for the university and a uni staff member was responsible for one of his character references in court. The University hit back against these claims yesterday by saying they were resuming Li’s disciplinary process.

Richard Taylor, Chief Operating Officer of the University, said yesterday: “The University is absolutely not ‘standing by’ the assailant, whatever was said in court. There is a serious live disciplinary case that was paused so as not to frustrate the legal proceedings, that will now resume.”

Whilst Li’s sentence was suspended for two years, the judge stated that for six months he must abide to a 7pm to 7am curfew with an electronic tag and pay extensive fines that added up to £1000. Li must also carry out 120 hours of unpaid work.