Bones Found in Wetland Those of Missing Fox Lake Man

Police Say Party-Goers Witnessed Fatal Shooting, Kept Quiet

A Sunday autopsy determined some of the bones found on the South Side of Chicago near the city’s Calumet Incinerator -- at East 110th Street and South Stony Island Avenue -- were human and the cause of the person’s death was a gunshot wound to the head. The death was ruled a homicide by the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office.

The discovery of the bones on Friday and Saturday was the culmination of a two-year-old missing person’s case, the murder of a 20-year-old man at a party in northwest suburban Palatine. 

The case dates back to August 2006, when Fox Lake police opened a missing person investigation into the whereabouts of Jesse M. Beskow of Fox Lake. The case went cold for 18 months until Palatine police heard a rumor in February 2008 that Beskow had been murdered at a party in July 2006.

For the past seven months, investigators from Palatine, Fox Lake and the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office Cold Case Unit tried to locate and interview people who may have been at that party. Dozens of people were interviewed, including five who said they were at the party, but denied any knowledge of Beskow.

A search warrant was executed in April, and swabs were taken at the scene of the party from an area of the ceiling which had been repainted. There was not enough genetic material available for a DNA comparison, the release said.

Last week, police located a sixth person who was at the party who admitted witnessing the murder of Beskow, police said. The other five witnesses were brought in for further questioning and all of them eventually admitted witnessing the murder, as well.  They said Beskow was seated at a table when a 24-year-old man shot him in the head.

However, instead of notifying authorities, some of the attendees carried the body to a bathtub, washed off the evidence, wrapped the body in a blanket and drove it to Chicago in the trunk of a car.

Police later located the father of the 24-year-old suspect, who admitted helping dispose of the body, the release said. On Thursday, Sept. 25, he took detectives to a wetland area overgrown with 12-foot weeds on the South Side. A team of investigators and cadaver dogs searched the area Friday, but located only animal bones. They returned on Saturday and found the skeletal remains believed to be Beskow.

One person remains in Palatine police custody, but no charges had been filed as of early Monday afternoon. The suspected shooter was still being sought.

Copyright CHIST - SunTimes
Contact Us