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Police: Boyfriend slits wrists, implicates self in NYU death

  • Story Highlights
  • NEW: Michael Cordero, 23, victim's boyfriend, charged with murder
  • Boyfriend implicates himself in NYU student's death, authorities say
  • Dead woman's parents are professors at NYU
  • She was found wrapped in a sheet on the floor of her apartment Sunday
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From Deborah Feyerick and Jeanne Meserve
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NEW YORK (CNN) -- The boyfriend of a 20-year-old woman found dead in a New York University apartment building was arrested and charged with murder Wednesday, the New York Police Department said.


A man walks two dogs by the NYU housing complex where the body of Boitumelo McCallum was found.

Michael Cordero, 23, was taken into police custody late Tuesday after he tried to commit suicide, authorities said. Police had said previously they wanted to talk to him about the death of Boitumelo McCallum, whose body was found over the weekend.

NYPD spokesman Paul Browne said Cordero was found bleeding with slits across his wrists, and was hospitalized at Roosevelt Hospital in stable condition. Browne said Cordero made statements implicating himself in McCallum's murder.

It was not immediately clear when McCallum was killed. She was last seen early Thursday morning when she was host of a party in her apartment. On Sunday night a couple leasing a room in the apartment noticed a foul odor coming from her bedroom.

The room was locked, so the couple called police, who gained access through a balcony window.

McCallum's body was found wrapped in a sheet on the floor. She had been dead for several days.

The medical examiner was scheduled to run tissue and toxicology tests, authorities said. A preliminary examination showed no signs of sexual assault.

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly told reporters there were some injuries to McCallum's head and face, including what appeared to be a fractured nose. A police source said the weekend's 90-degree weather had hastened the body's decomposition.

McCallum's parents are professors at NYU, and she was staying with her mother at the NYU-owned apartment building, which is usually occupied by students and faculty, police said. She held a South African passport. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

CNN's Rose Arce contributed to this story.

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