PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — The trial for a St. Louis man accused of killing a retired Peoria surgeon was moved Thursday from early October to early next year.
Robert Ely, 56, faces charges of first-degree murder, residential burglary and theft in connection with the Jan. 5, 2021, death of 92-year-old William Marshall. Prosecutors have alleged he’s part of a criminal ring that travels around the region targeting the elderly.
He had been slated for trial on Oct. 2 but that was postponed after his attorney indicated he had to go to trial that week in the Chicago area on a much older case. Chief Peoria County Judge Katherine Gorman set the Feb. 20, 2024 trial date
All parties will be back on Nov. 21 for a review hearing to make sure things are still on track for the trial which is expected to last a week.
At a news conference in June 2021 when Ely was charged, State’s Attorney Jodi Hoos said authorities found a St. Louis area storage locker that had items including valuable pieces of art from the Marshall home. That storage unit had ties to Ely, she said.
Marshall was stabbed several times and had defensive wounds on his body, which Hoos said two years ago indicated he was trying to fend off his assailant. Marshall was found in the basement of his house, located in the 500 block of East High Point Place.