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Although the death penalty has been off the table for years in Illinois, Madison County State’s Attorney Tom Gibbons is seeking a way to use it in three recent cases. Gibbons has formally requested the federal government review the cases that have recently happened in Bethalto, Edwardsville, and Granite City.
In all three instances, the suspects crossed state lines to allegedly kill their victims. Gibbons tells The Big Z he is seeking the resources of the federal government to “seek the ultimate justice for these victims and their families.”
Click here for Gibbons' comments
The Federal First-Degree Murder statute allows for those found guilty of First-Degree Murder to be punished by death.
Defendants Brady Witcher and Brittany McMillan traveled to Birmingham, Alabama where they kidnapped and murdered a woman on December 13, 2019. On December 19th, they shot and killed three victims—Shari Yates, Andrew Brooks, John McMillian—in a Bethalto home and fled to Hazelwood, Missouri where they were arrested.
On January 4th, defendant Timothy Banowetz traveled from Missouri to the Edwardsville home of the victims. The Defendant forcefully restrained and threatened Randy Gori and two minors using a deadly weapon before ultimately stabbing Mr. Gori to death.
Four days later on January 8th, defendants Kadeem Noland and Christine Mills traveled from St. Louis, Missouri and entered the Granite City home of victim Jason Thomas. When Mr. Thomas returned to his residence, he was shot to death by the defendants who then fled back to St. Louis, Missouri.
Per the press release from Gibbons' office:
State’s Attorney Tom Gibbons stated, “I am seeking the review of the U.S. Attorney’s Office to bring the most severe cases justice. When violent offenders come from out-of-state to commit crimes in our county, the highest sentence they will receive is life in prison. By requesting the resources of the federal government, it is my purpose to seek the ultimate justice for these victims and their families. I want to ensure the safety of the Citizens of Madison County from the criminals traveling to our communities.”