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July 19, 2013

STATEMENT FROM PROSECUTION ON SENTENCING OF CONVICTED
MURDERER CHRISTOPHER HARRIS

Springfield — Attorney General Lisa Madigan and Logan County State’s Attorney Jonathan Wright issued statements today following Judge Scott Drazewski’s sentencing of Christopher Harris to five consecutive terms of natural life in prison for the September 2009 murders of Raymond ‘Rick’ Gee, Ruth Gee, Justina Constant, Dillen Constant and Austin Gee in their Beason, Ill. home. Judge Drazewski also imposed a 30 year sentence for the attempted murder of Tabitha Gee. In addition, Harris received a 30-year sentence for his conviction for home invasion and a 20-year sentence for armed robbery. A Peoria County jury found Harris guilty of the charges on May 31, 2013.

In response to today’s sentence, Attorney General Madigan made the following statement:

“Life in prison is the only appropriate sentence under Illinois law for the heinous crimes that Christopher Harris committed. This sentence will ensure he pays for his deadly actions with the remainder of his life in prison. My thoughts are with the family and friends of the Gee family as they continue to grieve in the wake of these senseless acts.”

State’s Attorney Wright added:

“Given the repeal of the death penalty, a sentence of natural life in prison is the maximum sentence that could be imposed. It is not only the maximum sentence for these murders, it is the right sentence. The murders of Raymond Gee, Ruth Gee, Justina Constant, Dillen Constant and Austin Gee and the attempted murder of Tabitha Gee were horrific. Christopher Harris should pay with his life for these brutal killings. Our prayers continue to be with Tabitha and the family and friends of all the victims that healing and closure can begin for them.

The Logan County State’s Attorney’s office requested the assistance of Attorney General Madigan’s office in prosecuting Harris. The trial was moved to Peoria County following a ruling on a defense motion for a change of venue. Working with State’s Attorney Wright, Assistant Attorneys General Michael Atterberry, Steven Nate and Robert Hollinshead assisted on the case for Madigan’s Criminal Enforcement Division.

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