Mystery of missing scholar who vanished in broad daylight shakes university

A Chinese scholar is missing after a bizarre chain of events.

According to NBC News, Yingying Zhang came to the United States from China to study at the University of Illinois. She hoped to land a professorship and help her parents financially. But now, her parents are desperately searching for their 26-year-old daughter.

June 9th she was reportedly on her way to sign an apartment lease. Police released a photo of when she may have been last seen.

She had just gotten off a bus. Then, surveillance video shows she got into a black Saturn Astra.

Her boyfriend said Zhang is normally very cautious and would not have left with a stranger unless duped or lured.

Some reports say she may have called a ride-sharing service after running late. Local police also say they received reports of a man posing as a police officer.

Her father traveled to Illinois from Nanping, China. He has begged whoever may have abducted his daughter to safely return her and emphasized, "We will forgive you." and asked his daughter to be strong.

The case is being treated as a kidnapping.

The FBI is offering a $10,000 reward for information in the case. A Gofundme page has also raised more than 90-thousand dollars.

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