Crews Search River For Murder Suspect's Mother

Family members seek closure as they await word on the shores of the Des Plaines River

By Anthony Ponce
|  Tuesday, Mar 26, 2013  |  Updated 8:44 PM CDT
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Emergency crews are searching the Des Plaines River for the body of a woman police believe was killed by her son. Anthony Ponce reports.

Emergency crews are searching the Des Plaines River for the body of a woman police believe was killed by her son. Anthony Ponce reports.

Emergency crews, volunteers and dogs searched the Des Plaines River Tuesday, looking for the body of a woman police believe was killed by her son.

The last boat pulled out of the water at 4 p.m. after crews failed to find anything.

Police have charged Charles McCullum, 21, with first-degree murder after allegedly confessing to choking and stabbing his mother, 54-year-old Jeannie Parker last Thursday, and dumping her body in the river.

Family members gathered at the river awaiting word of a body described McCullum as "passive" and "calm," and said they find it hard to believe he could do the crime he's accused of committing.

"We don't understand it, there was no tension in the home or nothing like that, so we don't know what provoked it or what caused it," Parker's sister-in-law, Lovett Williams, said.

Charles McCullum "It's baffling man, it's been really hard on the family. We're just trying to deal with it, and we want some closure," Parker's brother, Terrance Robinson, said.

Police say McCullum (pictured, right) admitted dumping his mother's body in the river, right across from the Joliet police station.

"We just want the physical body so we can have closure. We know she's in heaven, we know she's there," Williams said.

Crews had problems navigating underwater because of murky conditions. Sonar equipment was later brought in to aid in the search.

McCullum remained in custody, held on $5 million bond.

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