Princeville Couple Recovered; Pending Official ID

Oct 30, 2018

A Peoria County Coroner's van is backed up at the Spoon River Bridge, on Route 78.
Credit Kristin McHugh, / Peoria Public Radio

Male and female bodies were pulled from Spoon River near Route 78, just north of Laura sometime after 4:30 p.m. Tuesday.

It ends a two-day exhaustive search for the missing Princeville couple, though an official coroner’s ID is pending.


Bradley University English Professor Susan B. Brill de Ramirez and Bradley IT Specialist Antonio "Tony" Ramirez Barron.
Credit Bradley University

  Susan Brill de Ramirez and Antonio Ramirez Barron, both 63-year-old Bradley University professionals, went missing late last week.


Their 21-year-old adopted son was arrested Monday after allegedly confessing to killing and dumping his parents.


Jose Ramirez made his first appearance in a Peoria County courtroom Tuesday via video.


Jose G. Ramirez, 21, is accused of killing his parents in their shared Princeville home on N. Maher Road in rural Peoria County.
Credit Peoria County Commitment Report

Dave Kenny is the charging prosecutor. He told the judge witnesses report Ramirez speaking of killing his parents multiple times.


Kenny says further Ramirez, "told detectives essentially that he was tired of his parents, waited until they were asleep and went into the bedroom with a knife, used pepper spray to distract them, stabbed his dad in the stomach and then stabbed his dad in the neck. Then his mom got out of bed and he also stabbed her in the stomach and the neck.”

Kenny says Ramirez gave detectives a second version of the story Tuesday where he says he “hit each of them with a baseball bat.”  


Ramirez has been assigned a public defender. His bond was set at $3-million.


Matthew Roberts, 20, of Princeville is accused of concealment of a homicide and obstruction of justice in connection with the disappearance of the Ramirez couple.
Credit Peoria County Commitment Report

The other man allegedly involved is 20-year-old Matthew Roberts of Princeville. Roberts was arrested as an accessory but was also charged with murder late Tuesday.


Neither Ramirez or Roberts have a criminal record.  


The Peoria County Coroner says official identification will be necessary. Neither body included personal identification. An autopsy is planned Wednesday.  


A vigil service for the couple is planned for Thursday, November 1 at 4:30 p.m. in the Michel Student Center Ballroom on the Bradley University campus.