In Court: Child Porn, Home Invasion, DNA Dispute

Court Watch, Feb. 25: New Lenox man gets seven years for burglary and child porn. This week's big cases and a look at what's on next week's south suburban court docket .

The Southland's major criminal and civil cases heard in Cook County and Will County courts this week.

Leading the Docket


Alex J. Shingler, 21, of New Lenox, was sentenced to seven years in prison Tuesday after pleading guilty to two separate charges: possession of child pornography and residential burglary.

Cook County


Pretrial hearings continue while a possible fourth suspect remains at large.


Public defenders had been looking to split evidence and conduct separate analysis.

Will County

FRANKFORT — Pretrial hearings for Darrell Stephenson were continued to March 28 to again give attorneys time to examine the state’s evidence, some of which is alleged to include child porn that cannot be viewed outside the Will County State’s Attorney’s Office until trial.

Accused of having sexual contact with a boy half his age, Stephenson, 24, has pleaded not guilty to multiple counts related to aggravated criminal sexual abuse and possession of child porn. He once coached youth soccer in Frankfort and surrounding communities, according to prosecutors, but a member of his family declined to speak publicly.

MOKENA — Trial was set June 25 for Joseph Messina, . But the date could be pushed back if his attorney, David Carlson, produces an expert opinion on blood splatter, which would give the state cause to ask for more time. Carlson has until March 15 to file any additional evidence.

Messina was charged with two counts of aggravated battery after witnesses told police he hit Eric Bartels two times in the head—once on his feet and once while he lay on the asphalt unconscious.


But Brian H. Younker, of Tinley Park, said he was unaware of the 2010 crime until charges came a year later, putting blame on his insurance agent.

On the Docket Next Week


Steven Sly, accused of having sex with a Mokena teen


Myrna Jurcev, an Oak Lawn community activist , a felony

Joseph Bozen, accused of solicited sex from teens through the Internet


Rodney Julun, charged with the murder of Dwight Jones of New Lenox Township

Brain Trainauskas,


David Baitman, a woman in Oak Forest


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