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14-year-old charged in murder of 11-year-old half-sister, stabbed 30 times

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Updated: March 24, 2014 3:48AM



A 14-year-old girl allegedly stabbed her 11-year-old half-sister more than 30 times as she yelled at her that she didn’t appreciate all that she had done for her, including making dinner six times in a week and doing the younger girl’s chores, prosecutors said in court Wednesday afternoon.

When police arrived — alerted by a 911 call from the older girl — the scene showed signs of a struggle, Mundelein Police Chief Eric Guenther said.

The 14-year-old initially told police Tuesday morning that a Hispanic man had broken into their home, had attacked her sister then ran off.

But on Tuesday afternoon, investigators confronted the 14-year-old, telling her that there were strands of hair in her half-sister’s hands, and DNA testing would reveal more information about her attacker. The 14-year-old allegedly confessed to the crime, saying her half-sister had hit her the night before, had made her mad and did not appreciate all that she was doing for her, prosecutors said.

The 14-year-old said she woke up at 7:50 a.m., waited 10 to 15 minutes, went downstairs and got a knife, then went to stab her sister, prosecutors alleged.

They struggled, and when she realized the younger girl was dead, she stopped the attack, prosecutors said.

Guenther said both girls lived in the home and they were the only ones there when police arrived.

The immediate cause of the death of the victim, whose name cannot be released due to her age according to law, was “multiple sharp force injuries,” which were “consistent with a fillet knife,” said Lake County Coroner Thomas Rudd.

Rudd said there were approximately 30 stab wounds to the girl’s neck, chest and arm. In addition to the 30, there were three incise wounds, which were consistent with a slice or slash, on her face.

There were another four defensive wounds to the palm of her left hand and a single defensive wound to the palm of her right hand, Rudd said. The girl had “bruises and punctate wounds” on the right part of her chest, indicating that the tip of the knife was pushed on it, but did not enter the skin, he said.

Additionally, there were knife wounds that “nicked” the carotid and right internal jugular vessels, Rudd said. There were two more stab wounds to the left upper lung, he said.

Finally, the girl suffered superficial bruising to her extremities, he said.

Mundelein police said they will release more information as the investigation continues. It had not been determined Wednesday whether the girl will be charged as an adult, Tujillo Vargas said. That decision could take a couple of weeks, officials said.

The Lake County Major Crimes Task Force is assisting Mundelein police in the ongoing investigation at the 1600 block of Woodhaven Court.

Mundelein’s Woodhaven Court cul-de-sac and the surrounding neighborhood were decidedly dour Wednesday, when the only people outside were police officers and news reporters.

Several of the townhouses in the area were marked vacant, and the few folks at home declined to discuss their neighborhood tragedy in any detail.

“It’s a very sad thing,” said one woman on the cul-de-sac, who asked not to be identified.

A man living a few doors away said he moved to Mundelein earlier this month, and did not know any of his neighbors.

“It is what it is,” he said.

Waiting to pick up his son Wednesday afternoon at Carl Sandburg Middle School, which was briefly shutdown Tuesday morning, Ted Pipinis said he remains bothered by the news of a 14-year-old killing an 11-year-old.

“It’s a shock,” said Pipinis, adding that he did not know the family.

Albert Barrientos, who was picking up his daughter, said he tried calling the school during the lockdown Tuesday but phone lines were busy.

“I was concerned at that point about what was happening,” he said.

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