Illinois Supreme Court says case against Beaman weak in 1993 murder
Thursday, May 22, 2008 8:43 PM CDT
By Kurt Erickson
SPRINGFIELD -- The state’s highest court Thursday reversed the conviction of Alan Beaman, who has been in prison for 13 years for the murder of Illinois State University student Jennifer Lockmiller of Decatur.
Beaman’s parents, Barry and Carol Beaman of Rockford, left their home Thursday to share the news with their son, who is serving his 50-year term at the state prison in Dixon.
"We’re pretty excited," said Carol Beaman.
Members of Lockmiller’s family also decline comment Thursday.
Former Normal police detective Tony Daniels said he has the same doubts today about Beaman’s guilt as he did when he was arrested.
Daniels agreed with the high court ruling that there was more evidence pointing toward John Doe as being involved in Lockmiller’s death and that it was good news that Beaman’s case was sent back for retrial.
Daniels initially led the investigation into Lockmiller’s death, but was replaced as lead detective several weeks into the case.
It was not clear Thursday what the court’s reversal means for Beaman’s incarceration.
’’We have no details whatsoever,’’ Carol Beaman said.
’’The ball is in the prosecutor’s court,’’ added Daniel.
Beaman’s activities on the day of the murder became a focal point of his appeal.
A bank receipt placed Beaman in Rockford at 10:11 a.m. the day Lockmiller was killed 140 miles away in Normal. Two telephone calls placed from Beaman’s home to a church where Beaman attended also raise questions about whether he could have driven to Normal, committed the murder and returned home before his mother came home from a shopping trip.
Prosecutors conceded during arguments to the court in January that some information regarding the timing was disclosed to a grand jury but was not discussed at Beaman’s trial.