DANVILLE — A 52-year-old Danville man on Monday was formally charged with first-degree murder in connection with the June 2012 beating death of his girlfriend.
Kenneth R. Dye, who was arrested in Peoria on Friday nearly a year after the death, faces three counts of first-degree murder, one count of aggravated domestic battery and one count of aggravated battery-great bodily harm, stemming from the death of Joan Duckworth, 50.
If he's convicted of the murder charges, Dye could be sentenced to 20 to 60 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections, or an extended 60- to 100-year term if he is eligible.
If he's convicted of aggravated domestic battery, a Class 2 felony, he could be sentenced to three to seven years in prison, or an extended seven- to 14-year term if he is eligible. And if he's convicted of aggravated battery, a Class 3 felony, he could be sentenced to two to five years in prison or an extended five- to 10-year term if he is eligible.
At an arraignment hearing in Vermilion County Circuit Court, which he attended via video conference, Dye — who is being represented by the public defender's office — pleaded innocent to the charges.
His preliminary hearing was set for 2:30 p.m. on June 20.
Vermilion County Associate Judge Karen Wall set Dye's bond at $2 million, meaning he will have to post $200,000, or 10 percent, in order to be released.
Prosecutors asked for the hefty bond amount due to the nature of the charges as well as Dye's criminal history.
Dye was convicted and served time behind bars for cases in Vermilion County, including retail theft over $150, a subsequent offense, from a 1991 case; battery, from 1993; criminal trespass to a residence, from 1995; and criminal trespass to a residence, from 2011. He was serving a sentence of conditional discharge after he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor domestic battery charge from 2012 at the time of Ms. Duckworth's death.
A relative found Ms. Duckworth's body at her home in the 500 block of Porter Street, Danville, on the evening of June 28, 2012. The relative had not heard from Ms. Duckworth in a few days, grew concerned, went over to her house to check on her and discovered her body.
An autopsy showed she died of blunt force trauma.
Police said Dye had some type of domestic relationship with Ms. Duckworth.
He was arrested by Peoria police Friday night after receiving a tip that he was at St. Francis Medical Center, where he was visiting with another person. He was then handed over to Danville police.