- Associated Press - Friday, August 14, 2015

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Four people charged with beating to death a USC graduate student from China during a robbery attempt have pleaded not guilty to murder.

City News Service says they entered pleas Friday and could face life in prison if convicted.

They’re charged with the November 2010 death of Xinran Ji. The 24-year-old electrical engineering student was attacked with a baseball bat as he walked home after a late-night study group at USC.

Prosecutors have announced they won’t seek the death penalty against 19-year-old Andrew Garcia and 20-year-old Jonathan Del Carmen.

The other defendants, 18-year-old Alberto Ochoa and 17-year-old Alejandra Guerrero, can’t face capital punishment because they were minors at the time of the crime.

Three defendants also are charged with robbing a couple at a beach two hours after the killing.

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