LEXINGTON, Mass. (CBS/AP) — Hongyan Sun of Lexington was held without bail on a murder charge in connection with the death of his wife, whose body was found by friends inside a car last week. Court documents allege that Shen Cai was killed shortly after telling a friend that if she was ever found dead "it would be a homicide, not a suicide."
The Middlesex District Attorney says an autopsy determined Cai, died as a result of "mechanical asphyxiation." Her husband, 50-year-old Sun, was arraigned Thursday in Concord District Court.
Prosecutors say the couple was going through a divorce and that Cai had told friends about past verbal abuse and at least one instance of physical violence.
"He monitored who she was talking to, who she was allowed to talk to...and hid cameras in her home to be able to watch her and her adult daughter," a prosecutor said.
The couple had been married for four years. According to police, Cai "became increasingly fearful of her husband in the days leading up to her death."
On May 27, police say Cai told a friend "if she ever was found dead, it would be a homicide not a suicide." A day later, Cai was seen for the last time alive when she met with her divorce attorney about Sun hiding her personal items in the house.
Investigators believe Cai died after a struggle in the couple's home May 28 and her body was placed in a Honda CRV on another street, apparently as an effort to mislead police.
Sun told police he had a physical altercation on May 28 and Cai bit his finger. Police later discovered the tip of Sun's finger had been bitten off in the struggle and he concealed it with bandages. He also had multiple injuries that police say were consistent with a struggle, but Sun said he did not know how he had received them.
Officers also said Sun gave conflicting accounts about when he had last seen his wife and other witnesses.
Police found evidence that someone had attempted to clean up the crime scene inside the couple's home. Sun was also seen throwing shoes in the trash at work. The shoes were later determined to have blood on them.
Fingerprint dust and crime scene stickers were still on the door of the Honda CRV when Sun spoke to reporters last week. He wore hospital clothes and had bruises and cuts on his hands and arms at the time, though he did not say how he was hurt.
That day, Sun told reporters "I can't tell anything. I don't want to any more damage to anybody, OK."
Melinda Thompson, Sun's attorney, was asked about the comment on Thursday.
"I don't know anything about that I didn't know him then. But he is denying all allegations," she said.
Sun was ordered held without bail. He is next expected to appear in court on July 30.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
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