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Mount Pulaski man charged
with murder in baby's death

[MARCH 13, 2003]  Logan County State's Attorney Timothy J. Huyett has filed first-degree murder charges against Louis Russo II, 18, of Mount Pulaski. The charges allege that he struck and choked his 3-month-old daughter, Jule Russo, knowing that such acts would create a strong probability of death or great bodily harm, thereby causing the death of Jule Russo.

The child was brought to the Abraham Lincoln Memorial Hospital on Monday, March 3, by the defendant at approximately noon. Doctors at the scene indicated that the baby had been dead for at least an hour before arrival. X-rays and CT scans showed the presence of pre-existing brain damage as well as rib fractures. An autopsy conducted the following day by Dr. Viollette Hnilica showed that Jule suffered much abuse and died as a result of blunt force trauma to the head and chest.

The Logan County sheriff's office was contacted by hospital personnel, and an inquiry into the circumstance of Jule's death was begun. After a weeklong investigation Louis Russo was arrested without incident by state police on Saturday afternoon in Clinton. The Illinois State Police led the investigative team at the request of Logan County Sheriff Steve Nichols. "The state police have the manpower and the equipment to more efficiently spearhead a multicounty complex investigation such as this, and I want to thank them for so quickly responding to the citizens of Logan County " Nichols stated.

"I want to thank and commend all law enforcement which were involved in bringing this incident to a rapid conclusion. The Logan County Sheriff's Department, the Illinois State Police, the Mount Pulaski Police Department and the law enforcement agencies of Clinton, Ill., where the arrest was made, were all invaluable members of the team," said Huyett. "This is an extreme tragedy, and I will do everything I can to seek some justice for Jule," Huyett stated.


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This is the second infant murder in the last three years in Logan County. Edward Lascola was convicted by a Logan County jury in October of 2002 for the murder of 11-month-old Daneysia Williams. Daneysia's mother, Kimberly Williams, awaits trial on an accountability theory in the same case.

"I only hope that people will pay attention to the signs of abuse and begin protecting our children," Huyett said. "It's up to all of us to begin to end the cycle of violence in which we appear to find ourselves."

Russo appeared in court Tuesday. He received a court-appointed lawyer, Patrick Timoney. Russo faces six charges of first-degree murder. If found guilty, he could receive life imprisonment with no chance of parole.

Russo's bond was set at $2 million. He continues to be held at Logan County Jail. He returns to court April 8.

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Police Reports

Link to Illinois sex offender information provided by the Illinois State Police:


Searches available by city, county, ZIP code and name.

Community Policing Activities

Some that still don't get it, got it

[MARCH 1, 2003]  From Feb. 9 through 22, the Lincoln Police Department, with a grant provided by the Illinois Department of Transportation, conducted a seat belt enforcement detail within the city of Lincoln. Nine officers participated in the enforcement detail and stopped 119 vehicles during this detail. The results are as follows:

  • Speeding citations: 24
  • Other moving citations: 31
  • Seat belt citations: 96
  • Child restraint citations: 1
  • Suspended license: 3
  • Total citations issued: 155

As we approach spring and a busy traveling season, the Lincoln Police Department continues to encourage the motoring public to use seat belts and child restraint devices while traveling.

[Officer Tim Butterfield,
Lincoln Police Department]

Court News

Name, age, address; date, charge; sentence

(Week ending 3-6-03)

  • Rain Bektesoski, 19, 104 SW Arch, Atlanta; domestic battery; pleaded guilty, 18 months probation, $350 fine plus court costs, $100 mandatory assessment, Men Who Batter class

  • Jeremiah V. Charron, 22, 808 N Monroe; 1-20-03, battery; six months conditional discharge, $350 fine plus court costs

  • LeAnn Charron, 23, 512 Omaha; 9-11-02, deceptive practices; pleaded guilty, $150 fine plus court costs, $148.07 restitution

  • Brandon Cordell, 19, 300 E. Logan, Hartsburg; 1-15-03, unlawful possession of alcohol by a minor; pleaded guilty, 12 months court supervision, $250 fine plus court costs

  • Joshua Delatorre, 19, 110 Joynt, Latham; 1-11-03, unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia; pleaded guilty, 12 months court supervision, $750 fine plus court costs

  • Jeremy S. Hulen, 20, 1926 Lambert, Normal; unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia; pleaded guilty, $750 fine plus court costs

  • Alvin Jones, 46, 715 N. Monroe; 11-9-02, theft under $300, pleaded guilty, 12 months conditional discharge, $63 restitution plus court costs

  • Michael G. Medina, 24, 607 Table, Lockport, 10-13-02, unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia; pleaded guilty, $750 fine plus court costs

  • Erika L. Murry, 23, 1504 E. Cook, Springfield; 7-18-02, unlawful possession of cannabis; pleaded guilty, $200 fine plus court costs, $200 mandatory assessment

  • Brian Rex, 32, 7104 E. Bethany, N. Little Rock, Ark.; 1-4-03, unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia; pleaded guilty, six months court supervision, $750 fine plus court costs

  • Martha L. Ross, 38, 404 Palmer; 9-2-02, deceptive practices; 12 months probation, $300 fine plus court costs, six days Logan County Jail with credit for six days

  • Martha L. Ross, 38, 404 Palmer;1-8-03, unlawful damage of a vehicle; pleaded guilty, 12 months probation, restitution, six days Logan County Jail with credit for six days

  • Bruce Steen, 33, 1102 N. Postville Drive #11; 2-4-03, domestic battery; pleaded guilty, 18 months probation, court costs, 14 weekends Logan County Jail

  • Tyrone Wrenn, 35, 408 E. Vine; 2-4-3, unlawful possession of cannabis; pleaded guilty, $200 fine plus court costs, $200 mandatory assessment, $100 lab fee

Marriage Licenses

(Week ending 3-6-03)

  • Robert M. Beam, Jasper, Ga.
    Tywanna L. Fishel, Lincoln

  • Tri N. Nguyen, Lincoln
    Phuong Vu-Tu Do, Lincoln

  • Jeffery L. Letterle, Lincoln
    Emily S. Finley, Lincoln

  • Kandall J. Barnes, Lincoln
    Mary A. Gesner, Lincoln


(Week ending 3-6-03)

  • Anthony C. Dinger, Lincoln
    Tabatha C. Dinger, Lincoln

  • David L. Leaser, Lincoln
    Carolyn S. Leaser, Lincoln

  • Clint B. Clark, Lincoln
    Leticia S. Clark, Lincoln

Most Wanted

[Click here]

Anyone with information concerning crimes in the Lincoln and Logan County area is urged to call Crime Stoppers at 732-3000 or send a message to crime@ccaonline.com. Your information will be kept confidential and you may remain anonymous. If your information leads to the arrest of people involved, Crime Stoppers will pay you a cash reward up to $1,000.

Crime Stoppers has an answering machine to answer your calls. This is to protect you if you wish to remain anonymous. (Your calls cannot be traced with the machine.) You need to let us know how you can be contacted about the incident, or you must watch to see if the subject has been arrested. This is so we can make a payout.

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