The man accused of killing Johns Hopkins student Linda
Trinh last year pleaded guilty on Nov. 14 to the charge of
first-degree murder. He did so on the eve of his trial.
Donta Allen, 28, admitted that he killed Trinh, 21, in
her residence near campus during a burglary attempt in
January 2005. In his statement to police, Allen said that
he had burglarized the apartment once before and did not
expect Trinh to be home. When he found Trinh in the
apartment, the two fought when she tried to call the
police, the Associated Press reported.
Allen's trial was originally scheduled for Jan. 17 and
was postponed three times. The latest change, from Sept. 6
to Nov. 14, was made because the state's attorney assigned
to the case had resigned. In exchange for his plea, Allen
will receive a life sentence and could be eligible for
Trinh, a 21-year-old biomedical engineering major and
former president of her sorority, was found dead on Jan.
23, 2005, in her residence in the Charles Apartments, at
that time a privately owned building. It was bought by
Johns Hopkins in February 2006.
Allen, a non-Hopkins affiliate described by Baltimore
City police as a "close friend" of one of Trinh's sorority
sisters, was arrested on March 23 and later charged with
first-degree murder. Police possessed compelling DNA
evidence that linked Allen to the crime, and Allen's
attorney told the Associate Press that he had encouraged
his client to accept the plea because he "would have been
found guilty easily."