Was money the motive? Trial continues in murder of pregnant woman, 4-year-old

News-DemocratMarch 14, 2014 

Testimony continued Friday in the murder trial of Kevin Reid, the man accused of killing 19-year-old Anquiaette Parker and her 4-year-old cousin.a

Reid, of State Park Place, is accused of killing Parker, who was pregnant at the time, and Cermen "C.J." Toney Jr.

Madison County State's Attorney Tom Gibbons said Friday that the prosecution's theory is that Reid, now 58, killed Parker during a drug deal gone bad.

Parker had been selling crack to raise bail for her boyfriend, Gibbons said, and had more than $1,000 in cash, as well as crack, in her possession when they believe Reid came to her to buy drugs.

"Money could have been the motive," Gibbons said.

Parker and C.J. disappeared Nov. 6, 2005, and a search throughout the area found nothing for more than a year.

Then in March 2008, a worker clearing brush in State Park Place hit an old cistern with the bulldozer. Andrew Halbruegge testified Friday that he uncovered the cistern while clearing out some land and an abandoned building on his employer's property.

But Halbruegge testified he did not approach the cistern, because he knew the entire area had been repeatedly searched for the missing woman and her cousin. He informed the property owner.

But the jury already knows that the two bodies were found in the cistern, long dead from multiple stab wounds. Forensic experts testified earlier this week that there was extensive bone damange indicating Parker and C.J. were stabbed before their bodies were thrown into the cistern, which then was boarded over with railroad ties and covered with dirt for until the bulldozer ran into it more than two years later.

Later Friday morning, Rebecca Sansouci, of Granite City, testified that she smoked crack with Reid and his brother, Scott Reid, on the day Parker disappeared at Scott Reid's house.

Sansouci said that Kevin Reid told her he had bought the crack from Parker, who was known as "Tweety." Reid had a cut on his hand at the time, she said, and she bandaged it for him. They smoked crack several times that evening, she said, but did not see Parker that day.

Gibbons said that if money is the motive, then C.J.'s death most likely was collateral damage to the drug deal gone bad, which he called "tragic and sad."

C.J.'s mother, Latoya Coleman, testified at the beginning of the trial, which Gibbons said was "brutal," and left jurors in tears.

Reid initially was going to face the death penalty in this case, before it was eliminated in Illinois. That meant the defense received additional assistance and discovery time, so the trial is expected to last for a couple of weeks.

Kevin Reid is charged with two counts of first-degree murder for the deaths of Parker and C.J., intentional homicide of an unborn child and two counts of concealment of a homicidal death.

Attorneys John Rekowski and Dan Schattnik represent Reid. Assistant state's attorneys Jennifer Vucich and Kathleen Nolan are prosecuting.

Contact reporter Elizabeth Donald at edonald@bnd.com or 618-239-2507.

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