Wisconsin takes a shot at Ill. man acquitted

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Friday, July 17, 2009
— A man acquitted of murder in Illinois is in the Rock County Jail, facing charges that he dumped the body in Riverside Park in Janesville.

Raymond C. Williams, 39, Rockford, Ill., was transported to Wisconsin on Wednesday after being extradited.

The Rock County criminal complaint states that Williams beat a man to death with a pipe and forced a woman to help him move the body from Rockford to Janesville.

The body of Travel D. Hester, 27, was found near a boat launch in Riverside Park on March 13, 2007. Rockford police arrested Williams two days later after a joint investigation with Janesville police.

Williams was charged with first-degree murder and aggravated battery for allegedly beating up the woman, his ex-girlfriend. He was acquitted earlier this year after a jury trial.

Williams faces Rock County charges of kidnapping and hiding a corpse.

The woman told investigators that she was sleeping in bed with Hester when she awakened as she was being struck in the face. A savage beating of both Hester and the woman ensued, according to the Rock County criminal complaint.

Williams is accused of forcing the woman to clean up the residence where the beating took place, load the body into the trunk of a car and accompany Williams while he drove around, looking for a place to dump the body.

Williams looked in Rockford, but he eventually drove north to Beloit, where he also couldn’t find a place he liked, so he went to Janesville, where he visited several parks before settling on Riverside, the complaint states.

Williams faces up to 50 years in prison on the Rock County charges, plus nine extra years if convicted as a repeat felony offender.

Last updated: 10:55 am Thursday, December 13, 2012

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