Three people were charged Sunday with killing a pregnant woman and two of her children, and slicing open the woman’s womb to remove her full-term baby, police said.
The infant, named Elijah by relatives, was found with one of the suspects Friday, authorities said. The baby boy was in good health at a hospital.
Investigators said they do not know who Elijah’s father is, and they would not discuss a motive.
Elijah was found hours after Deborah Evans, 28, and two of her children were found murdered. A third child, 17-month-old Jordan, was found unharmed in a bedroom in Evans’ apartment.
Jordan’s father, Levern Ward, was charged with murder and kidnaping, along with his cousin and the cousin’s boyfriend.
Evans’ cousin, Fred Moody, told Chicago TV stations Sunday that Ward had beaten and attacked Evans in the past and that she had filed for a court order of protection.
The body of 10-year-old Samantha was found in the apartment with Evans, and the tortured body of 8-year-old Joshua was found by police about 12 hours later in an alley in nearby Maywood.
Police said Elijah was cut out of his mother’s womb during the murders. They did not notify Evans’ relatives until Saturday that the baby had survived. Evans was due to give birth today.
“It was more than domestic, but it was not devil worship,” said DuPage County state Atty. Anthony Peccarelli. “It was planned. Here’s a woman who’s home with her children, and somebody comes into the home; there apparently is no forced entry.”
He also said there appeared to be no relationship to drugs.
Besides Ward, 24, the other suspects were Jacqueline Annette Williams, 28, and Fedell Caffey, 22. Ward and Williams are cousins; Caffey is Williams’ live-in boyfriend.
Police, acting on a tip, arrested Williams outside her home Friday night in the Chicago suburb of Schaumburg. She was carrying Elijah, said DuPage County prosecutor Joe Birkett.
Evans’ live-in boyfriend, James Edwards, found the bodies when he returned home from work on the night shift, police said.