Cold case investigation leads to murder charges

Many police forces have cold cases, that is, criminal investigations that were halted without any arrests or charges being filed. Authorities in Madison and Jersey Counties have recently joined forces to make an arrest in a cold case arising out of a disappearance that happened eight years ago.

The case was reopened at the urging of an assistant county prosecutor who volunteered to work on cold cases. The murder allegedly occurred on June 25, 2010, when the victim disappeared. Police used dogs trained to find cadavers to search an area in Jersey County, but this search produced no results.

At the urging of the investigators, police returned to the secluded area in Jersey County that had been searched in 2010. When the area was searched again, police found the victim’s burned body, but they did not disclose the exact location. According to charging documents, the suspect was arrested at his home in Jerseyville and is being held without bond. The defendant is alleged to have lured the victim from Madison County to Jersey County, where he shot her with a 9mm Luger. He has been charged with two counts of first-degree murder and one count of concealing a homicide.

The revival of a cold case can seem like a monster from the past for anyone charged with the crime. Anyone facing such a situation may wish to consult a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. An experienced lawyer can provide helpful advice on the strength of the evidence and potential defense strategies. The longer an investigation lasts, the greater the chance that police may have made one or more procedural mistakes that can provide the basis for a successful defense or, if circumstances warrant, a favorable plea agreement.

Source: Belleville News-Democrat, “Prosecutors say man ‘lured’ woman before he shot her and burned her body in 2010,” Mary Cooley, Kaley Johnson, Kara Berg, April 12, 2018