PINCKNEYVILLE — Two additional city residents have been arrested in connection with the 2010 murder of 15-year-old Sidnee Stephens of Pinckneyville.

Perry County Sheriff Keith Kellerman announced Friday that Chad R. Bennett, 22, and Dakota Wall, 20, both of Pinckneyville, were arrested Friday and charged on the basis of accountability with first-degree murder, aggravated kidnapping, two counts of home invasion, residential burglary and kidnapping. Bennett also was charged with concealment of a homicidal death.

Kellerman said the accountability charges mean the suspects are accused of aiding, abating or attempting to aid in the murder and can be charged with the crime.

Both are in Perry County Jail with bond set at $500,000 each, and arraignments are expected to take place Tuesday or Wednesday, Kellerman said.

Stephens’ body was found in a creek south of Pinckneyville in July 2010. She had been shot and strangled. Three suspects have already been found guilty of taking part in the murder.

Carl Dane was found guilty in 2011 but committed suicide in his jail cell before being transferred to prison. James Glazier was sentenced to 60 years in prison in September; Robbie Mueller is still awaiting sentencing.

Wall pled guilty in October 2011 to obstructing a peace officer during the investigation. She was ordered to pay a $404 fine and sentenced to home confinement. She was given credit for time already served in Perry County Jail.

Pinckneyville Police Department, Randolph County Sheriff’s Office and Illinois State Police have also been involved in the investigation. He said the progress “shows what law enforcement can do when we work together.”

Kellerman said law enforcement “knew a lot of people were involved from day one” but said he does not believe there are any more arrests pending.

He said he could not offer any other details but said he hoped the arrests could bring closure to Stephens’ family.

Mary Ruth Tritschler, Stephens’ grandmother, attended the news conference and said she hopes to find closure but she also wants some answers as to why this had to happen to her granddaughter.

“I just want to know why,” Tritschler said.


(1) comment


I can't believe so many people wanted to destroy this girls life - directly or indirectly. This is terrible and if these two (Bennett and Wall) participated or covered this up in anyway should be held accountable!!! I hope and pray the families of all involved can get some closure as well as peace.

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