Slain NIU Student's Remains to be Released - NBC Chicago

Slain NIU Student's Remains to be Released

Some of Toni Keller's remains to be given to family within 10 days



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    Toni Keller went missing near the Northern Illinois University campus on Oct. 18, 2010.

    Some of the remains of a slain Northern Illinois University student will be released for a memorial service, according to an agreement reached Friday between defenselawyers and prosecutors.

    Prosecutors will keep some of Antinette "Toni" Keller's remains, which are needed for evidence, but the rest can be given to her family, DeKalb County State's Attorney Clay Campbell said.

    The remains should be released in seven to 10 days.

    Family members wanted to wait until they had Keller's remains to hold a memorial service, cousin and family spokeswoman Mary Tarling said.

    "She needs to be at her own memorial," Tarling said.

    The agreement, announced during a hearing at the DeKalb County Courthouse in Sycamore, comes after prosecutors filed a motion last month requesting the coroner release some of her remains, the Daily Chronicle in DeKalb reported.

    Keller, an 18-year-old art student from Plainfield, was last seen about noon Oct. 14. Friends said she had been headed to a park and nature preserve near NIU. Her burned remains were found two days later. Police found Keller's burned clothing and her cell phone near the remains.

    William Curl, 34, of DeKalb pleaded not guilty in February to murder charges in Keller's death. He remains held in the DeKalb County jail on more than $5 million bond.

    Curl's attorney, public defender Regina Harris, asked a forensic anthropologist to determine how much of the remains were needed for evidence.

    Full Coverage: Toni Keller